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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.

Videos
Writer Roxane Gay Weighs in on Kara Walker's Work at the New MoMA: 'It's Important that You Don't Look Away'

Writer Roxane Gay Weighs in on Kara Walker’s Work at the New MoMA: ‘It’s Important that You Don’t Look Away’

  IN ANTICIPATION OF ITS REOPENING, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York asked writer Roxane Gay to select a work of art from its collection and discuss what she sees in it. She chose “Christ’s Entry Into Journalism” (2017) by Kara Walker. “She has managed in a series of figures to depict...
A Pioneer of Conceptual Art, Lorna Simpson Receives 2019 Getty Medal

A Pioneer of Conceptual Art, Lorna Simpson Receives 2019 Getty Medal

  AGAINST A STORMY BACKDROP, the 2019 J. Paul Getty Medals were presented to Mary Beard, an author and classics professor at the University of Cambridge, and American artists Ed Ruscha and Lorna Simpson. The recipients were announced in January and a dinner was held in their honor Sept. 16. Simpson’s recent paintings have been...
Professor Richard J. Powell Reflects on Archibald Motley's 'Portrait of My Grandmother' at the National Gallery of Art

Professor Richard J. Powell Reflects on Archibald Motley’s ‘Portrait of My Grandmother’ at the National Gallery of Art

  BEFORE HE PAINTED hotly colored Jazz Age scenes set in Chicago and Paris, Archibald Motley Jr. (1891-1981), made a loving portrait of his paternal grandmother embedded with history and the nuances of her life experience. Emily Sims Motley (1842-1929) was born in Kentucky where she was formerly enslaved. “This painting…is in some ways an...
Celebrating DC Pride, Brendan Fernandes Turns Smithsonian Atrium Into a Space for Dance, Resistance, and Resiliance

Celebrating DC Pride, Brendan Fernandes Turns Smithsonian Atrium Into a Space for Dance, Resistance, and Resiliance

  THE LIGHT-FILLED ATRIUM at the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) was transformed into a dance floor on Sunday. Artist and choreographer Brendan Fernandes staged “Free Fall 49” (2017), a piece he developed in response to the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Fla. On June 12, 2016, a lone gunman killed 49 people and wounded...
'60 Minutes' Profiled Mark Bradford, Introducing Him as One of America's 'Most Important and Influential Artists'

’60 Minutes’ Profiled Mark Bradford, Introducing Him as One of America’s ‘Most Important and Influential Artists’

  ANDERSON COOPER is a CNN anchor, 60 Minutes correspondent, and art collector who owns works by Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Toyin Ojih Odutola, and Mark Bradford. Called “The Hood is Moody,” his Bradford work is made with end papers—rectangles of white tissue paper used to set hair. On Sunday, Cooper profiled Bradford on “60 Minutes,”...
Simone Leigh is at the Guggenheim, the Whitney, and Even on CBS Where She Said: 'It's So Shocking What is Happening to Me'

Simone Leigh is at the Guggenheim, the Whitney, and Even on CBS Where She Said: ‘It’s So Shocking What is Happening to Me’

CBS NEWS reports on a broad range of issues. Rarely, however, does it devote coverage to visual artists. Last Saturday was an exception when Simone Leigh was featured on CBS This Morning. The network appearance is the latest development in a succession of new opportunities and recognition over the past five years, culminating in the...
Emory Douglas: 'I Was the Revolutionary Artist of the Black Panther Party'

Emory Douglas: ‘I Was the Revolutionary Artist of the Black Panther Party’

Emory Douglas talks about his graphic design work. His images have become synonymous with the visual identity of the Black Panther Party. | Video by AIGA   THE GRAPHIC IMAGES of Emory Douglas communicated the Black Panther Party’s platform and programs. From 1967 to the early 1980s he developed the organization’s visual identity. He served...
In a New Documentary, 4 Los Angeles Area Artists Explore the Creative and Practical Implications of Motherhood

In a New Documentary, 4 Los Angeles Area Artists Explore the Creative and Practical Implications of Motherhood

Kenyatta A.C. Hinkle is among the artists profiled in the documentary “Artist and Mother.” | Video by KCET   DOES MOTHERHOOD ALTER an artist’s practice or change her work and approach to creativity? It’s a question rarely discussed publicly that a new documentary takes on and addresses directly. “You have very significant successful artists and...
New ART21 Film Documents Jack Whitten in the Studio Working on His Last Painting

New ART21 Film Documents Jack Whitten in the Studio Working on His Last Painting

  LAST OCTOBER, ART21 collaborated with Jack Whitten (1939-2018) on a short film about his life and work. Shot in his studio, “An Artist’s Life: Jack Whitten” captures him making a painting titled “Quantum Wall, VIII (For Arshile Gorky, My First Love In Painting),” as he explains his innovative methods and techniques. He also talks...
Moments in Time: Andre D. Wagner Photographs African American Life as it Unfolds on the Streets of New York

Moments in Time: Andre D. Wagner Photographs African American Life as it Unfolds on the Streets of New York

  THE PHOTOGRAPHS OF Andre D. Wagner celebrate everyday excellence and the power of fleeting moments. The New York-based street photographer trains his camera primarily on African Americans throughout the city, documenting the many untold stories found in neighborhoods from Brooklyn and Harlem. His images of blackness have recently been featured in the New York...
Jordan Casteel's Portraits Bring Visibility to Black Men in Harlem

Jordan Casteel’s Portraits Bring Visibility to Black Men in Harlem

  BIGGIE SMALLS APPEARS ON THE COVER of the latest edition of Frieze magazine. The slain rapper is wearing one of his signature Cosby sweaters, a gold chain and dark shades. His image is emblazoned on a red hoodie worn by Quentin, an African American man who is the subject of a painting by Jordan...
WSJ. Magazine Recognizes Mark Bradford's Banner Year with 2017 Innovator Award

WSJ. Magazine Recognizes Mark Bradford’s Banner Year with 2017 Innovator Award

  ART SHOULD GET RIGHT UP IN YOUR FACE. “A good art work should rush out so close up to you that you are so uncomfortable. It should just rush out and get in your face,” Mark Bradford says in a new WSJ. The Wall Street Journal Magazine video. He talks about how America is...
Julie Mehretu: 'What Does It Mean to Paint a Landscape in this Political Moment?'

Julie Mehretu: ‘What Does It Mean to Paint a Landscape in this Political Moment?’

  FOR MORE THAN TWO DECADES, curators at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) have been commissioning artists to create works for a pair of walls in its voluminous atrium. In 1997, Sol LeWitt was the first artist selected. Kerry James Marshall painted murals for the space in 2008. In anticipation of the...
Recognized for Her Portraits of Black Men, New Art21 Film Explores How Jordan Casteel 'Paints Her Community'

Recognized for Her Portraits of Black Men, New Art21 Film Explores How Jordan Casteel ‘Paints Her Community’

  AFTER DEVOTING A SUMMER in Gloucester, Mass., to landscape painting, Jordan Casteel decided to start making portraits of black men. The man who killed Trayvon Martin was acquitted in those months between her first and second year at Yale University where she earned her MFA. The experiences of her twin brother were unsettling, too....