Skip to page content
Artists

Dindga McCannon

(1947)
Dindga McCannon
Les Enfants, 1972
Dindga McCannon
Mercedes, 1971

Biography

Dindga McCannon’s use of personal objects, photographs, and ephemera focuses on the history and stories of women—both well-known public figures and unknown family and friends who have shaped her world.

A third-generation Harlemite, Dindga McCannon’s multidisciplinary practice features mixed-media quilts, textiles, paintings, and sculptures. At age ten, she told her parents she wanted to be an artist and went on to attend high school for fashion design. In 1964, she joined the Twentieth Century Art Creators collective. When the group split soon after, she became a member of the Afrocentric faction, the Weusi Artist Collective. The men in Weusi helped McCannon—one of only two women members—to learn how to stretch a canvas and present her first solo exhibition at a small coffee shop. At the same time, McCannon attended night school at City College and studied at the Art Students League under the likes of Jacob Lawrence, Charles Alston, and Richard Mayhew.

McCannon, like other women of the time, had to balance personal responsibilities while confronting pervasive racism and sexism. In response, she cofounded Where We at Black Women Artists with Faith Ringgold and Kay Brown. This group of Black women fostered community as a creative outlet and supported each other with childcare and financial needs. A 2017 exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum, We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women 1965–1985, included a painting made by McCannon in 1975, and brought attention to the collective and to McCannon’s practice specifically. Her use of personal objects, photographs, and ephemera focuses on the history and stories of women—both well-known public figures and unknown family and friends who have shaped her world.

In 2021, after over five decades of making art, McCannon finally received her first major solo exhibition, In Plain Sight—accompanied by the first publication devoted to her work—at Fridman Gallery in New York. Her work has received support from the Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance; Urban Artists Initiative, Harlem Arts Alliance; and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Her work has appeared in Studio Museum exhibitions such as The Fine Art of Collecting I (1985) and Regarding the Figure (2017).

Exhibitions and Events

Past Exhibitions and Events
Explore further
Artists

Dindga McCannon

(1947)
Dindga McCannon
Les Enfants, 1972
Dindga McCannon
Mercedes, 1971
Dindga McCannon

Les Enfants, 1972

Les EnfantsWoodcut19 x 11 in. (48.3 x 27.9 cm)The Studio Museum in Harlem; gift of anonymous donor1976.60

Biography

Dindga McCannon’s use of personal objects, photographs, and ephemera focuses on the history and stories of women—both well-known public figures and unknown family and friends who have shaped her world.

A third-generation Harlemite, Dindga McCannon’s multidisciplinary practice features mixed-media quilts, textiles, paintings, and sculptures. At age ten, she told her parents she wanted to be an artist and went on to attend high school for fashion design. In 1964, she joined the Twentieth Century Art Creators collective. When the group split soon after, she became a member of the Afrocentric faction, the Weusi Artist Collective. The men in Weusi helped McCannon—one of only two women members—to learn how to stretch a canvas and present her first solo exhibition at a small coffee shop. At the same time, McCannon attended night school at City College and studied at the Art Students League under the likes of Jacob Lawrence, Charles Alston, and Richard Mayhew.

McCannon, like other women of the time, had to balance personal responsibilities while confronting pervasive racism and sexism. In response, she cofounded Where We at Black Women Artists with Faith Ringgold and Kay Brown. This group of Black women fostered community as a creative outlet and supported each other with childcare and financial needs. A 2017 exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum, We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women 1965–1985, included a painting made by McCannon in 1975, and brought attention to the collective and to McCannon’s practice specifically. Her use of personal objects, photographs, and ephemera focuses on the history and stories of women—both well-known public figures and unknown family and friends who have shaped her world.

In 2021, after over five decades of making art, McCannon finally received her first major solo exhibition, In Plain Sight—accompanied by the first publication devoted to her work—at Fridman Gallery in New York. Her work has received support from the Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance; Urban Artists Initiative, Harlem Arts Alliance; and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Her work has appeared in Studio Museum exhibitions such as The Fine Art of Collecting I (1985) and Regarding the Figure (2017).

Exhibitions and Events

Past Exhibitions and Events
Explore further