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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.

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Leah Chase, Pioneering Creole Chef and Passionate Art Collector, Has Died at 96

Leah Chase, Pioneering Creole Chef and Passionate Art Collector, Has Died at 96

Chef Leah Chase (1923-2019)   THE COLLECTION of the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C., includes portraits of America’s most iconic figures—legends of culture, politics, and history. When the most prominent among these national treasures dies, the Smithsonian museum recognizes their life and legacy by displaying their portrait in a designated In Memoriam space on...
In the Wake of His Passing, Fellow Curators Pay Tribute to Okwui Enwezor with Outpouring of Remembrances and Respect

In the Wake of His Passing, Fellow Curators Pay Tribute to Okwui Enwezor with Outpouring of Remembrances and Respect

Okwui Enwezor (1963-2019)   THE RANKS OF BLACK CURATORS in the art world, while expanding, are relatively thin. Nearly every one has a connection to Okwui Enwezor (1963-2019), whether they were close with him or worked with him, or only of knew him and his work. Enwezor, the renowned curator and critic, died March 15....
Okwui Enwezor Has Died at Age 55, the Visionary Curator Broadened the Geographic Scope of the Contemporary Art World

Okwui Enwezor Has Died at Age 55, the Visionary Curator Broadened the Geographic Scope of the Contemporary Art World

Okwui Enwezor (1963-2019). | Photo: Venice Biennale   A LEADING LIGHT in the art world has dimmed. Okwui Enwezor (1963-2019), the internationally renowned curator and critic who served as artistic director of the 56th Venice Biennale, died March 15 in Munich after a three-year battle with cancer. He was 55. Enwezor served as artistic director...
Phenomenal Woman: Remembering Aretha Franklin, the Indisputable Queen of Soul

Phenomenal Woman: Remembering Aretha Franklin, the Indisputable Queen of Soul

Aretha Franklin (1969) recording at Atlantic Records in New York.   SHE WAS A NATIONAL TREASURE. A beacon for the world. The Queen of Soul. Aretha Louise Franklin (1942-2018), whose powerful voice provided a soundtrack for change in America, died yesterday at her home in Detroit. She was 76. The cause was advanced pancreatic cancer....
Remembering Peggy Cooper Cafritz, the Passionate Art Collector and Education Advocate Died at 70

Remembering Peggy Cooper Cafritz, the Passionate Art Collector and Education Advocate Died at 70

Arts and Education Advocate Peggy Cooper Caftritz (1947-2018)   FOR THOSE WHO CARE ABOUT equity and access in arts and education, a major ally and important advocate has been lost. Peggy Cooper Cafrtiz (1947-2018), the Washington, D.C., arts patron who co-founded the Duke Ellington School of the Arts, died Feb. 18 at a local hospital....
Jack Whitten, the Pioneering and Inventive Abstract Painter, Dies at 78

Jack Whitten, the Pioneering and Inventive Abstract Painter, Dies at 78

  IT WAS ALWAYS ABOUT EXPERIMENTATION. For more than half a century, Jack Whitten (1939-2018) pursued the possibilities of paint, material, and technique. While constantly evolving his conceptual practice, he remained proudly political, committed to exploring weighty issues, and intent on lifting up the legacies of fellow African American artists and cultural figures by paying...
Chicago Artist Barbara Jones-Hogu, a Founding Member of AfriCOBRA, Has Died

Chicago Artist Barbara Jones-Hogu, a Founding Member of AfriCOBRA, Has Died

BARBARA JONES-HOGU, “Unite (First State),” 1969 (screenprint). | © Barbara Jones-Hogu, Courtesy Lusenhop Fine Art   THE BLACK ARTS MOVEMENT has lost a central figure. Barbara Jones-Hogu (1938-2017), a founding member of the artist collective AfriCOBRA, died Nov. 14. The Chicago artist, educator, and filmmaker, was 79. Recognized for her political, pro-Black images combining figuration...
Nasher Museum Hosting Barkley Hendricks Memorial Celebration, Presenting Special Tribute Exhibition of Artist's Work

Nasher Museum Hosting Barkley Hendricks Memorial Celebration, Presenting Special Tribute Exhibition of Artist’s Work

Barkley Hendricks (1945-2017). | Photo by Duke University, Courtesy Jack Shainman Gallery   THE NASHER MUSEUM OF ART at Duke University is celebrating the life and work of Barley L. Hendricks (1945-2017) today. The extended museum and campus community, along with the family, friends, and fans of Hendricks are gathering at the museum to pay...
A 'Passionate Experimentalist,' Painter Phillip J. Hampton Began His Career as a Trailblazer

A ‘Passionate Experimentalist,’ Painter Phillip J. Hampton Began His Career as a Trailblazer

Lot 38: PHILLIP HAMPTON, “Untitled,” (mixed-media, watercolor and enamel on illustration board). | Estimate $2,000-$3,000. Sold for $2,000 including fees   A SHORT MENTION in the May 22, 1952, edition of Jet magazine documents a historic first. The headline reads: “Missouri Art School Graduates First Negro MA.” The pathbreaker was Phillip J. Hampton (1922-2016), an...
AIA Recognizes Legacy of African American Architect Paul R. Williams with Gold Medal Awarded Nearly 40 Years After His Death

AIA Recognizes Legacy of African American Architect Paul R. Williams with Gold Medal Awarded Nearly 40 Years After His Death

Residence in Hollywood, Calif., designed in 1928 by Paul Williams for banking executive Victor Rosetti.   STATELY AND GRACEFUL are the descriptors frequently invoked in real state listings for homes designed by architect Paul Revere Williams (1894-1980). The Williams name adds quantifiable prestige to prime properties on the most desirable streets in Beverly Hills, Hollywood...
Barkley L. Hendricks, 72, the Artist Known for his Life-Size, Realist Portraits, Has Died

Barkley L. Hendricks, 72, the Artist Known for his Life-Size, Realist Portraits, Has Died

BARKLEY L. HENDRICKS, “Slick (Self Portrait),” 1977   ARTIST AND PHOTOGRAPHER Barkley L. Hendricks (1945-2017) died today. He was 72. With a practice spanning painting and photography and landscapes and figuration, he was most recognized for his life-size realist portraits painted in the 1970s of subjects whose cool poses and style of dress conveyed a...
Muhammad Ali Has Died: The Charismatic Boxing Legend was a Photographer's Dream

Muhammad Ali Has Died: The Charismatic Boxing Legend was a Photographer’s Dream

  CAUGHT IN A QUIET MOMENT, donning a robe while penning a letter. Indulging a young boy in the chance to spar with a champion. Perched on a massage table, wide-eyed with a playful, mock expression of shock. Pictures tell incredible stories. In life and death, much has been said and written about Muhammad Ali;...
Pioneering Malian Photographer Malick Sidibé Has Died at Age 80

Pioneering Malian Photographer Malick Sidibé Has Died at Age 80

Embed from Getty Images   CONSIDERED ON OF THE MOST influential photographers of his time, Malick Sidibé has died at age 80. For more than half a century, the Malian photographer documented the post-independence cultural transformation in his native country. He was recognized for his legendary studio portraits and dynamic street shots, bringing Mali’s people...
Sculptor Inge Hardison, Who Paid Tribute to African American Legends, Has Died

Sculptor Inge Hardison, Who Paid Tribute to African American Legends, Has Died

A TRUE RENAISSANCE WOMAN, sculptor Inge Hardison, was also a photographer, poet and actress. The New York Daily News published an article announcing her death today, reporting that she died on March 23 “after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.” Hardison lived in Manhattan and was 102. Hardison was recognized for her sculptural portraits of...