Welcome to Culture Type®

An essential resource focused on visual art from a Black perspective, Culture Type explores the intersection of art, history, and culture

Culture Talks
Culture Talk: Lisa Howie on Organizing Inaugural Atlantic World Art Fair, Online Event Features Works by Artists From Caribbean and Atlantic Islands

Culture Talk: Lisa Howie on Organizing Inaugural Atlantic World Art Fair, Online Event Features Works by Artists From Caribbean and Atlantic Islands

  AS THE GLOBAL ART MARKET, historically centered around Europe and North America, increasingly recognizes the contributions of artists in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America, a new art fair is showcasing a region that remains woefully under-appreciated—the Caribbean and Atlantic Islands. The Atlantic World Art Fair debuted online May 31 and is...
Culture Talk: Long-Serving Museum Trustee Denise Gardner on Her Historic Election as Next Board Chair of Art Institute of Chicago

Culture Talk: Long-Serving Museum Trustee Denise Gardner on Her Historic Election as Next Board Chair of Art Institute of Chicago

  THE ART INSTITUTE OF CHICAGO announced last week that Denise Gardner was elected chairperson of the Art Institute of Chicago Board of Trustees. She will be the first woman and first African American to chair the board, which serves as the governing body of both the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC)...
Curator Laura Hoptman Reflects on Meeting Artist David Hammons and Organizing New Show at Drawing Center, the First Museum Exhibition Dedicated to His Body Prints

Curator Laura Hoptman Reflects on Meeting Artist David Hammons and Organizing New Show at Drawing Center, the First Museum Exhibition Dedicated to His Body Prints

  IN THE LATE 1960s, David Hammons developed an inventive method for creating monoprints, using grease, pigment, and his own body to make the impressions. He was living and working in Los Angeles at the time. Over the span of a decade, Hammons produced a spectrum of body prints, combining the process with silkscreening and...
Culture Talk: Director Sam Pollard on His New HBO Documentary 'Black Art: In the Absence of Light'

Culture Talk: Director Sam Pollard on His New HBO Documentary ‘Black Art: In the Absence of Light’

Trailer for “Black Art: In the Absence of Light.” | Video by HBO   THE OPENING SCENE OF Sam Pollard‘s documentary “Black Art: In the Absence of Light” is half-century-old footage of NBC’s Tom Brokaw talking with David C. Driskell (1931-2020) on the Today Show. The interview is about Driskell’s seminal exhibition “Two Centuries of...
An Ode to Tina Turner, Nikita Gale's First Solo Museum Exhibition is About Refusal, Presence, and Visibility

An Ode to Tina Turner, Nikita Gale’s First Solo Museum Exhibition is About Refusal, Presence, and Visibility

“PRIVATE DANCER” (2020) by Nikita Gale   THE FIRST SOLO MUSEUM EXHIBITION of Nikita Gale is an abstract sculptural installation at the California African American Museum (CAAM) in Los Angeles. Composed of theatrical trusses and lighting, the work pays homage to Tina Turner’s 1984 album “Private Dancer.” Gale has invoked Turner for six years and...
Culture Talk: Frank Stewart on His Jazz Photographs, Approach to Image Making, and Forthcoming Museum Retrospective

Culture Talk: Frank Stewart on His Jazz Photographs, Approach to Image Making, and Forthcoming Museum Retrospective

  THE ARRAY OF IMAGES Frank Stewart has made over the course of his career is dizzying. He’s photographed African American culture in its many forms—art, food, dance, and music, jazz in particular. He’s made portraits of artists, shot barbecue in the South and Midwest, and captured the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He photographed a...
Culture Talk: Collector Pamela Joyner on the Artists Defining the History and Shaping the Future of Black Abstract Art

Culture Talk: Collector Pamela Joyner on the Artists Defining the History and Shaping the Future of Black Abstract Art

  SINCE 1999, PAMELA J. JOYNER and Alfred J. Giuffrida have focused their collecting on abstract art by artists of African descent. Nearing 100 artists, the collection is documented in a hefty volume, “Four Generations: The Joyner / Giuffrida Collection of Abstract Art,” and a traveling exhibition. After touring four museums, “Solidary & Solitary: The...
Culture Talk: Curator Julie Crooks on Art Gallery of Ontario's Acquisition of 3,500 Historic Caribbean Photographs

Culture Talk: Curator Julie Crooks on Art Gallery of Ontario’s Acquisition of 3,500 Historic Caribbean Photographs

  A NEW ACQUISITION has enriched both the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) and the communities it serves. Presented with the opportunity to help the Toronto museum acquire more than 3,500 historic photographs, members of the local black and Caribbean communities stepped up, helping to raise $300,000. The largesse of 27 donors made possible the...
58th Venice Biennale: After Co-Organizing 'Soul of a Nation,' Zoé Whitley Was Tapped to Curate the British Pavilion

58th Venice Biennale: After Co-Organizing ‘Soul of a Nation,’ Zoé Whitley Was Tapped to Curate the British Pavilion

Curator Zoé Whitley   THE BRITISH PAVILION at the 58th Venice Biennale features a new body of work by Irish artist Cathy Wilkes. Conceptual and figurative sculptures, a spare selection of household objects, and abstracted landscape paintings are installed in a series of six pristine galleries flooded with natural light. She’s created narrative moments and...
Culture Talk: Amoako Boafo's First Exhibition at Roberts Projects in Los Angeles Centers Black Subjectivity

Culture Talk: Amoako Boafo’s First Exhibition at Roberts Projects in Los Angeles Centers Black Subjectivity

  “Yellow Turtleneck” (2018) by Amoako Boafo   AFTER MOVING TO VIENNA, Amoako Boafo began a new portrait series. The work grew less out of inspiration and more out of motivation. Ghanaian-born Boafo found the Austrian capital generally unreceptive to black people and the art scene was just as challenging. The portrait series served as...
Backstory: Art Collector Kenneth Montague on Acquiring 'Blood (Donald Formey),' the 1975 Painting by Barkley L. Hendricks

Backstory: Art Collector Kenneth Montague on Acquiring ‘Blood (Donald Formey),’ the 1975 Painting by Barkley L. Hendricks

  “Blood (Donald Formey),” 1975 by Barkley L. Hendricks   “I’m most concerned about Barkley’s legacy now that he’s gone. I want more and more people to understand what all the hoopla’s about. He was a master painter and this is one of his greatest works.” — Collector Kenneth Montague IF YOU VISIT the Brooklyn...
Culture Talk: Collector Pamela Joyner on Why She Joined the Getty's Board and Her Strategy for Reframing the Art History Canon

Culture Talk: Collector Pamela Joyner on Why She Joined the Getty’s Board and Her Strategy for Reframing the Art History Canon

Collector and Philanthropist Pamela J. Joyner   THE J. PAUL GETTY TRUST announced the addition of Pamela J. Joyner to its board of trustees in February 2017. The influential philanthropist and art collector accepted the opportunity for one reason. She was intrigued by the possibilities of an ambitious idea the Getty Research Institute (GRI) was...
Culture Talk: Andrew Perchuk on How the Getty Research Institute's African American Art History Initiative Came Together

Culture Talk: Andrew Perchuk on How the Getty Research Institute’s African American Art History Initiative Came Together

Artist Betye Saar, 1970   THE J. PAUL GETTY TRUST dedicated resources to “recover the historical record of art in Southern California” in 2002. Nearly a decade later, the endeavor led to Pacific Standard Time, a region-wide collaboration with more than 60 institutions that resulted in a sweeping series of exhibitions, programs and publications exploring...
Culture Talk: Curator Jonathan Walz on the Rich History Found in the Archives and Collections Dedicated to Artist Alma Thomas

Culture Talk: Curator Jonathan Walz on the Rich History Found in the Archives and Collections Dedicated to Artist Alma Thomas

Portrait of Alma Thomas painted by Laura Wheeler Waring (1947). | Smithsonian American Art Museum   RESEARCH IS ONGOING for a forthcoming exhibition dedicated to the life and work of Alma Thomas (1891-1978), the accomplished and technically rigorous abstract painter who was the first African American woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney...
Culture Talk: Arnold Lehman on Curating 'American African American,' a Selling Exhibition at Phillips London

Culture Talk: Arnold Lehman on Curating ‘American African American,’ a Selling Exhibition at Phillips London

  AMONG THE HALLMARKS of Arnold Lehman’s nearly two-decade tenure as director of the Brooklyn Museum was his focus on community engagement, popular culture, and the visibility of African American artists. After retiring in 2015, he transitioned from the museum world to the auction world, joining Phillips as a special adviser to the CEO, Edward...
Culture Talk: Kellie Jones Discusses 'South of Pico,' Her Recently Published Book About African American Artists in Los Angeles in the 1960s and '70s

Culture Talk: Kellie Jones Discusses ‘South of Pico,’ Her Recently Published Book About African American Artists in Los Angeles in the 1960s and ’70s

Kellie Jones, author of “South of Pico.”   A DECADE AGO, Kellie Jones set out to write a book about African American artists in Los Angeles. The focus of her research was the 1960s and ’70s, a period when artists in the city were experimenting with materials and form, and mixing art with activism. Shortly...