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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
DC Moore Gallery is Showing Jacob Lawrence Series Documenting Life of  Haitian Revolutionary Toussaint L’Ouverture

DC Moore Gallery is Showing Jacob Lawrence Series Documenting Life of Haitian Revolutionary Toussaint L’Ouverture

“Strategy” (1994) by Jacob Lawrence   IN THE HANDS OF Jacob Lawrence (1917-2000), images of revolution and rebellion are both “serious,” as the artist described them, and radically imagined. His narrative series depicting the life and leadership of Toussaint L’Ouverture includes a portrait of the Haitian liberator in profile in formal military dress, an intense...
Black Art History: 17 Exhibition 'Firsts' Happening This February

Black Art History: 17 Exhibition ‘Firsts’ Happening This February

  BLACK HISTORY MONTH coincides with a number museum and gallery exhibitions marking new milestones for African American artists. On-the-rise talents such as Jordan Casteel, Eric N. Mack, and Amy Sherald are presenting their first major solo museum exhibitions this month. Nari Ward and Kevin Beasley are having their first New York museum shows. Mid-career...
In New Multiyear Partnership, Studio Museum in Harlem Will Present Exhibitions at MoMA and MoMA PS1

In New Multiyear Partnership, Studio Museum in Harlem Will Present Exhibitions at MoMA and MoMA PS1

Thelma Golden is organizing a solo show of painter Michael Armitage at MoMA in fall 2019.   ONE OF THE HIGHLIGHTS of the Studio Museum in Harlem’s exhibition programming is the annual group show presenting new work by budding artists in its Artist-in-Residence (AIR) program. Each cohort mounts a show at the conclusion of its...
The Year Ahead in African American Art: What to Look Forward to in 2019

The Year Ahead in African American Art: What to Look Forward to in 2019

  THE YEAR AHEAD begins and ends with major traveling exhibitions, each presenting nearly a century of works by African American artists. The January debut of “Black Refractions: Highlights From the Studio Museum in Harlem” at the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco kicks off a tour of six venues. Scheduled for seven...
Washington's Government-Funded Museums are Closed in the Wake of Shutdown, Barring Visitors from Exhibitions of Dawoud Bey, Mark Bradford, Gordon Parks, and Others

Washington’s Government-Funded Museums are Closed in the Wake of Shutdown, Barring Visitors from Exhibitions of Dawoud Bey, Mark Bradford, Gordon Parks, and Others

Gordon Parks, Mrs. Ella Watson, Washington, D.C., July 1942   “DUE TO THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN, all Smithsonian museums are closed.” The message is featured in a banner across the top of all of the institution’s websites. A similar message is posted on the doors of the museums, which closed to the public on Tuesday. The...
Julie Mehretu Will Be the Subject of a Major Traveling Retrospective in 2019

Julie Mehretu Will Be the Subject of a Major Traveling Retrospective in 2019

  THE LOS ANGELES COUNTY MUSEUM OF ART (LACMA) and Whitney Museum of American Art are co-organizing the first-ever comprehensive retrospective of Julie Mehretu. The traveling mid-career survey will feature more than 60 works, about 30 large-scale paintings and 32 works on paper (drawings and prints) dating from 1996 to the present. The exhibition is...
Guggenheim Mounting Exhibition Focused on Jean-Michel Basquiat's 'Defacement' Painting About Police Brutality

Guggenheim Mounting Exhibition Focused on Jean-Michel Basquiat’s ‘Defacement’ Painting About Police Brutality

WAITING TO TAKE THE L TRAIN HOME to Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, Michael Stewart was nabbed by a New York City transit officer, accused of scrawling graffiti on the wall of the First Avenue and 14th Street subway station in the East Village. The African American artist was arrested on Sept. 15, 1983, after 2 a.m....
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 artworks 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...