Black: Color, Material, Concept presents works that explore the ways that modern and contemporary artists of African descent consider the possibilities of “black” through their choice of media, their imagery and the ideas they bring to their work. As an element of art and design, “black” can have amazingly rich gradation of tones and depths. As a word, it a single syllable that can fill columns in a dictionary. As a social construction, it is one of the most highly charged and proudly asserted realities in American life. The exhibition includes more than two dozen paintings, sculptures and prints, drawn primarily from the Studio Museum’s permanent collection. The artists represented in the exhibition range from modernist elders such as Sam Gilliam and Jack Whitten, to a mid-century generation that includes Kerry James Marshall, Glenn Ligon, Leonardo Drew, and Nari Ward, to artists who came of age in the post-Civil Rights era, such as Kara Walker, Noah Davis and Kameelah Janan Rasheed.
Black: Color, Material, Concept is organized by Lauren Haynes, Associate Curator, Permanent Collection.