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Exploring art by and about people of African descent, primarily through the lens of books, magazines and catalogs, Culture Type features original research and reporting and shares invaluable interestingness culled from the published record on black art.

Exhibitions
Beyond Basel: Where to See, Buy, and Experience African and African American Art During Miami Art Week 2018

Beyond Basel: Where to See, Buy, and Experience African and African American Art During Miami Art Week 2018

Installations by Derrick Adams and Tavares Strachan, left background.   MIAMI ART WEEK is well underway and there are an overwhelming number of opportunities to socialize and see, buy, and experience art beyond Art Basel Miami Beach. A plethora of activities focused on artists of African descent continue this weekend. Many galleries participating in satellite...
After Debuting Two Major Public Art Works in New York, Derek Fordjour is Headed to Miami for a Solo Presentation at Art Basel

After Debuting Two Major Public Art Works in New York, Derek Fordjour is Headed to Miami for a Solo Presentation at Art Basel

“Derek Fordjour: Half Mast” (2018), outdoor installation at the Whitney Museum of American Art   WITH IMAGES OF MOURNING and celebration, Derek Fordjour is commanding the attention of New Yorkers. The artist’s work is the subject of two prominent public art installations in the city. Downtown, near the Whitney Museum of American Art and the...
The Studio Museum in Harlem is Sharing its Collection with America, Launching a Touring Exhibition of 100 Artworks in January 2019

The Studio Museum in Harlem is Sharing its Collection with America, Launching a Touring Exhibition of 100 Artworks in January 2019

“Conspicuous Fraud Series #1 (Eminence)” (2001) by Kehinde Wiley   A MAJOR EXHIBITION of more than 100 artwroks by a broad selection by black artists is headed to Seattle, Kalamazoo and Salt Lake City. In January, the American Federation of Arts (AFA) is launching “Black Refractions: Highlights from The Studio Museum in Harlem,” a national...
Curators Explain Why British Painter Lynette Yiadom-Boakye Won the Carnegie International's Top Prize

Curators Explain Why British Painter Lynette Yiadom-Boakye Won the Carnegie International’s Top Prize

“Amaranthine” (2018) by Lynette Yiadom Boakeye   A SERIES OF ARRESTING PORTRAITS is on view at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh. Single and double portraits are exhibited along with a painting of four black males standing together, seemingly in conversation. Lithe figures, all bare-chested wearing only dark pants, any number of narratives could...
Joyce J. Scott Employs the Beauty of Beads to Raise Issues Such as Violence and Racism: 'My Best Voice is as an Artist'

Joyce J. Scott Employs the Beauty of Beads to Raise Issues Such as Violence and Racism: ‘My Best Voice is as an Artist’

  IN THE HANDS of Joyce J. Scott, the possibilities of glass beads are endless. She uses beads to tell stories, raise challenging social and political issues, and celebrate her mother. A quilt artist, Elizabeth Talford Scott (1916-2011), taught her daughter to sew with beads when she was five years old. Scott’s early exposure was...
Nina Chanel Abney Debuts a New Series of Monumental Works at Pace Prints

Nina Chanel Abney Debuts a New Series of Monumental Works at Pace Prints

  WHETHER ITS THE BREAKING NEWS or a song she recently heard, Nina Chanel Abney is inspired by contemporary events and meaningful moments that often find their way into her work and may spontaneously define or change its direction. A new generation storyteller, Abney blends abstraction and figuration. Her images draw on the public discourse,...
Amid Rising Calls for Social Justice in America, the Clenched Fist is Appearing in Artwork and Museums

Amid Rising Calls for Social Justice in America, the Clenched Fist is Appearing in Artwork and Museums

From left, “Bridge” by Glenn Kaino; Tommie Smith (center) and John Carlos at the 1968 Summer Olympics.   THE CLENCHED FIST, a symbol of Black Power and strength in the face of adversity, is showing up in museums. The historic gesture reflects the current moment in which many groups, frustrated with the political climate and...
Looking in London: 10 Exhibitions to See This Season Featuring Kerry James Marshall, Julie Mehretu, and Adam Pendleton Among Others

Looking in London: 10 Exhibitions to See This Season Featuring Kerry James Marshall, Julie Mehretu, and Adam Pendleton Among Others

  YEAR AFTER YEAR, serious art aficionados descend on various locales around the world for art fairs, biennials, and major exhibition opening. The rolling schedule unfolds in New York, Basel, Paris, Venice, Berlin, Chicago, Miami, Johannesburg, Lagos, Los Angeles, and beyond. Each fall brings buyers and lookers to London for the 1-54 Contemporary Art Fair,...
'Royal Flush': Artist Nina Chanel Abney Debuts in Los Angeles at Two Museums

‘Royal Flush’: Artist Nina Chanel Abney Debuts in Los Angeles at Two Museums

  IN A 2008 PAINTING, Nina Chanel Abney brought together the seemingly disparate images of her friend Randal, former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, a pack of dogs, and Michael Vick, the NFL player who was serving 21 months in prison for participating in dog fighting, when the work was made. Titled “Randaleeza,” the...
This Fall, Multiple Exhibitions Dedicated to 'Soul of a Nation' Artists are on View Throughout New York City

This Fall, Multiple Exhibitions Dedicated to ‘Soul of a Nation’ Artists are on View Throughout New York City

Installation view of “Frank Bowling: Make It New” at Alexander Gray Associates   TEN DAYS AGO, “Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power” opened at the Brooklyn Museum. The groundbreaking traveling show “shines light on a broad spectrum of Black artistic practice from 1963 to 1983, one of the most politically,...
Gary Simmons Shines a Light on Historic 'Race' Films with All-Black Casts

Gary Simmons Shines a Light on Historic ‘Race’ Films with All-Black Casts

Installation view of “Gary Simmons: Fade to Black” at CAAM   A MONUMENTAL INSTALLATION has transformed the atrium/lobby of the California African American Museum (CAAM) in Los Angeles. The five wall-sized panels read: “Juke Joint,” “Moon Over Harlem,” “Midnight Shadow,” “The Joint is Jumpin, “Souls of Sin,” “Jivin in Be-Bop,” “The Bronze Buckaroo,” and on...
Dawoud Bey's Photographic Tribute to the Victims of 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing Collapses the Past and Present

Dawoud Bey’s Photographic Tribute to the Victims of 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing Collapses the Past and Present

WHEN HE WAS 11 years old, a book of photographs forever changed Dawoud Bey‘s perspective in terms of his vulnerability as a black child. His parents purchased the book in 1964 after hearing James Baldwin speak at their church in Queens, N.Y. The event was part of a tour organized by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating...
'Soul of a Nation' Opens in New York Where Many of the Exhibition Artists Were Active During the Civil Rights, Black Power Eras

‘Soul of a Nation’ Opens in New York Where Many of the Exhibition Artists Were Active During the Civil Rights, Black Power Eras

“Pittsburgh Memory” (1964) by Romare Bearden   HOW SHOULD AFRICAN AMERICAN ARTISTS respond to the Civil Rights Movement? The question was central to the organization of Spiral, the New York artist collective formed in 1963 in advance of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The 15-member group including Romare Bearden, Norman Lewis, Reginald...
Major Retrospectives of Adrian Piper, Charles White, and Howardena Pindell are Traveling to New Venues This Fall

Major Retrospectives of Adrian Piper, Charles White, and Howardena Pindell are Traveling to New Venues This Fall

“Everything #2.8” (2003) by Adrian Piper   THE PRESENTATION of Adrian Piper’s retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) was historic. “Adrian Piper: A Synthesis of Intuitions, 1965–2016” was the museum’s largest-ever exhibition devoted to a living artist. At once sprawling and intentionally organized, the show featured more than 290 works. A conceptual pioneer,...