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An exploration of black art through vintage and contemporary books, magazines and catalogs, Culture Type shares invaluable interestingness culled from the published record on black art.
Book Report: New Titles on McArthur Binion, Glenn Ligon, Mickalene Thomas, and More

Book Report: New Titles on McArthur Binion, Glenn Ligon, Mickalene Thomas, and More

BOOK REPORT CHARTS recently published art books. Among these six new titles, a number accompany exhibitions of work by African American artists including Norman Lewis, Kerry James Marshall, and Mickalene Thomas. A scholarly study investigates the life and work of early 20th century painter Horace Pippin.   “Suffering and Sunset:...
Alabama Artist Thornton Dial, Who Created 'Magisterial Constructions' Out of Everyday Objects, Dies at Age 87

Alabama Artist Thornton Dial, Who Created ‘Magisterial Constructions’ Out of Everyday Objects, Dies at Age 87

PIONEERING ALABAMA ARTIST Thornton Dial Sr., died on Monday, Jan. 25 at his home in McCalla, Ala. Dial created densely structured wall reliefs and mixed-media works exploring a range of subjects from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and race and social justice issues, to more mundane matters of everyday rural...
Valerie Gerrard Browne: Heir to Painter Archibald Motley Reflects on Legacy of the 'Jazz Age Modernist'

Valerie Gerrard Browne: Heir to Painter Archibald Motley Reflects on Legacy of the ‘Jazz Age Modernist’

THE FIRST GALLERY OF THE EXHIBITION “Archibald Motley: Jazz Age Modernist” features a series of striking portraits. Among the group is an image of the artist’s grandmother. The narrow, vertical canvas painted in 1922 has a quiet power, capturing the strength and endurance of a woman born a slave; the...
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Two Archibald Motley Family Portraits are Going on View in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.

Two Archibald Motley Family Portraits are Going on View in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.

  COME SPRING, VISITORS TO WASHINGTON, D.C.’s National Gallery of Art will have the opportunity to view “Portrait of My Grandmother,” by Archibald Motley (1891-1981). The 1922 painting was Motley’s favorite. In Southern California, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is presenting another family portrait. Motley’s “Uncle Bob” (1928) is expected to be...
How Much is that Painting? 10 Black Artists Whose Work Garners Top Dollar at Auction

How Much is that Painting? 10 Black Artists Whose Work Garners Top Dollar at Auction

THE 2016 AUCTION SEASON is gearing up in early February when the major houses are holding their first modern and contemporary art sales of the year in London. Although art by African American and African diasporic artists represents a nominal share of the lots offered by Sotheby’s, Phillips, and Christie’s (if they are included at...
The Year in Black Art: May 2015

The Year in Black Art: May 2015

CULTURE TYPE IS REVIEWING The Year in Black Art 2015 in monthly installments over the coming weeks. The report began with a look at The Newsmakers, seven artists and curators who continue to advance their practices and their projects with fresh approaches and new ideas—efforts that are recognized and often garner significant news coverage. The...
Triple Canopy: David Hammons's First Trip to the South was Prompted by an 'Outsider' Art Exhibition

Triple Canopy: David Hammons’s First Trip to the South was Prompted by an ‘Outsider’ Art Exhibition

NEARLY 30 YEARS AGO, David Hammons traveled to North Carolina to view the work of “outsider” artists. The elusive artist, who often uses found objects in his own work, had signed on to co-curate “Outside Insight” at Clockwork Gallery in New York. To identify the artists and works to be included in the exhibition, Tom...
On the Horizon in African American Art: Artists to Watch and Events to Look Forward to in 2016

On the Horizon in African American Art: Artists to Watch and Events to Look Forward to in 2016

WITH A NEW YEAR UNDERWAY and a compelling selection of new books, exhibitions and events on the horizon, here is what to look forward to in African American and African diasporic art—the most-anticipated happenings and artists to watch in 2016: After spending January at the historic residence of a Mexican muralist, Henry Taylor will present...
After Tackling America's Racial History in Her Work, Kara Walker Finds Her Own Roots on PBS

After Tackling America’s Racial History in Her Work, Kara Walker Finds Her Own Roots on PBS

FOR MORE THAN 20 YEARS, artist Kara Walker has explored the vestiges of slavery and the antebellum South in her critically recognized work. Known for her narrative silhouettes, her practice probes America’s uncomfortable, often violent, history through the lens of race, gender and sexuality. Given this, it is fascinating to watch Walker learn about her...
Popular on Culture Type: Top 10 Posts of 2015

Popular on Culture Type: Top 10 Posts of 2015

THIS YEAR’S MOST POPULAR POSTS, based on number of views, tended to be exhibition roundups and Culture Talk conversations with art world figures. The top Culture Type post by far, however, was a report published in March about the number of black artists slated to participate in the 56th annual Venice Biennale. It garnered more...
Culture Type Picks: 14 Best Black Art Books of 2015

Culture Type Picks: 14 Best Black Art Books of 2015

MANY OF THIS YEAR’S BEST African American art books were published to coincide with exhibitions. The correlation is not surprising given the caliber of exhibitions on view in 2015, including innovative (“Freedom Principle: Experiments in Art and Music, 1965 to Now”) and long overdue (“Noah Purify: Junk Dada” and “Procession: The Art of Norman Lewis”)...
The Year in Black Art: April 2015

The Year in Black Art: April 2015

CULTURE TYPE IS REVIEWING The Year in Black Art 2015 in monthly installments over the coming weeks. The report began with a look at The Newsmakers, seven artists and curators who continue to advance their practices and their projects with fresh approaches and new ideas—efforts that are recognized and often garner significant news coverage. The...
The Year in Black Art: March 2015

The Year in Black Art: March 2015

CULTURE TYPE IS REVIEWING The Year in Black Art 2015 in monthly installments over the coming weeks. The report began with a look at The Newsmakers, seven artists and curators who continue to advance their practices and their projects with fresh approaches and new ideas—efforts that are recognized and often garner significant news coverage. The...
Record Breaker: Norman Lewis Painting Sells for Nearly $1 Million at Swann Auction

Record Breaker: Norman Lewis Painting Sells for Nearly $1 Million at Swann Auction

THE MOMENTUM SURROUNDING NORMAN LEWIS (1909-1979) continued earlier this week when a large-scale abstract painting by the artist (shown above) garnered nearly $1 million at Swann Auction Galleries. The Dec. 15 auction featured seven Lewis works, including the sale’s top lot, an oil on canvas painting executed in a limited beige palette, estimated to sell...
The Year in Black Art: February 2015

The Year in Black Art: February 2015

CULTURE TYPE IS REVIEWING The Year in Black Art 2015 in monthly installments over the coming weeks. The report began with a look at The Newsmakers, seven artists and curators who continue to advance their practices and their projects with fresh approaches and new ideas—efforts that are recognized and often garner significant news coverage. The...