The most influential artist to me in this exemplary in this pursuit for the appropriated traditions is Kehinde Wiley. In his opening speech for the New Republic gallery show he expressed that things such as his work was evolved around the working of chance . In his case, he manipulates the chance of the representation of the black demographic in traditional work. Modifying the figurative works to create the chance for relating a body that is familiar. I see contemporary painter, Kehinde Wiley as a comparable to my work in regards to the topic as well as the manipulation of the human figure. The admirable features I see in Kehinde Wiley’s work in addition to these is the fantasy elements that are incorporated. These features are best exhibited in his piece, “Bound”. The work is a bronze sculpture that stands approximately four feet tall and two-and half feet wide. The composition is inviting as it includes busts of three identical women that have African descent features that are placed on a rounded triangle base. The expressions on all of the faces are of a staring and wondering nature that have a nature of regality as their faces are turned to the right at an approximate forty five degree angle as their all have their back facing each other to form a guard of the leaves the a laid on their base. The bodies are cut organically as it rounds off from shoulder to shoulder, just enough to form the upper torso to see the corset like dress that encompass the figure. Expanding
William H. Johnson was a successful painter who was born on March 18, 1901 in Florence, South Carolina. Johnson began exploring his level of creativity as a child, and it only amplified from there because he discovered that he wanted to be an artist. After making this discovery he attended the National Academy of Design in New York which is where he met his mentor Charles Webster Hawthorne who had a strong influential impact on Johnson. Once Johnson graduated he moved to Paris where he was exposed to different artists, various artistic abilities, and evolutionary creations. Throughout Johnson’s time in Paris he grew as an artist, and adapted a “folk” style where he used lively colors and flat figures. Johnson used the “folk” style to express the experience of most African-Americans during the years of the 1930s and 1940s.
She explains how this can be done by seeing black females as real valid people and treating them as such. In life we must stop objectifying the black female body before we can see any change within art. By understanding the black female as a legitimate individual with purpose, one can then accurately portray her within art, and create a more subjective authentic representation of the black female body. These beleifs presented by Lorraine O’Grady could be applied to the famous art piece The Moorish Bath, by Jean-Léon Gérôme, in how he depicts the black female body. Instead of having the black female in the background surrounded by darker colors and lighting, while the white female is in the brighter lighting, allow them both to be in the same brighter more focused lighting. Also the role of the black female should be reexamined in that she is serving the white female and bathing her. A more progressive version could be both the females bathing themselves making them both the main subjects, instead of objectifying the black body as one that only serves. Another aspect that should be addressed is the fact that the white female is fully naked while the black
Cany Peale’s painting shows an Anglo-Saxon woman engaging with an African American woman, at first glance, one could assume this is a genre painting, that of a peaceful scene demonstrating people in everyday activities (“Genre Painting”). Two women intimately engaging “in a grooming ritual” (Byrd) however this thought is fractured as you see the controlling way the Anglo-Saxon woman holds the bottom of the African American woman's face as she gazes upon herself in the mirror. A spectacle of power and control that is further illustrated as the Anglo-Saxon woman stands slightly taller than the African American, demonstrating the hierarchy and to establishing their identities as Mistress and slave.
In this essay, I will compare and contrast two different sculptures from two different contexts of art. The first being an Olmec Colossal head (monument 1), from the context of “Art of the Americas,” and the second sculpture being ahead from Rafin Kura. The head from Rafin Kura comes from the context of “Art of Africa.” Both sculptures come from two different time periods and parts of the world. They also are both made with natural materials and have their own symbolic meaning.
Kehinde Wiley’s early works were of people he pulled off the streets of Harlem. His art blurs the boundaries between traditional and contemporary modes of representation and the critical portrayal of the masculinity of black and brown men. Generally, western art has and does not focus on the narratives of people
Throughout history, societies have defined and transformed themselves through their art. When looking at works of art today, a person sees not only the work of art itself, but also the world from which it came from. The same is true for this transformation mask, which reflects the works of art and beliefs of the Northwest Coast Tribes.
Society seems to change and advance so rapidly throughout the years but there has always seemed to be a history, present, and future when it comes to the struggles of the African Americans. The hatred of a skin tone has caused people to act in violent and horrifying ways including police brutality, riots, mass incarcerations, and many more. There are three movements the renaissance, civil rights, and the black lives matter movements that we have focused on. Our artist come from different eras but have at least one similarity which is the attention on black art.
Kehinde Wiley’s large-scale, brightly colored, highly patterned portraits of African American subjects are a salute to traditional portraiture as well as a critique of the art historical focus on the privileged male Caucasian. The artist scouts out ordinary black men of ages 18 to 25 from urban settings to copy poses from works by master Western painters like Titian and Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. The photographs of their poses become Wiley’s references for his enormous, dazzlingly vibrant portraits. The extreme realism of the figure combined with intense color use, decorative patterning, and larger-than-life scale all emphasize the extravagant grandeur of power and male dominance. Wiley has radically shifted the paradigm to make a contemporary statement about the long absence of the black male figure in historical portraiture.
Notably, Kehinde Wiley’s biggest achievement today must be the National Portrait of Barack Obama will go up on the walls of Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in Washington produced by an artist who chosen by Mr. Obama himself in the closing months of his presidency. However, years prior, Wiley had a normal start. According to the author, Wiley was born in California. He was raised primarily by his mother and shared a home with his five siblings. The author continues by describing Wiley’s first art class, “he became keenly aware
When we look at this piece, we tend to see the differences in ways a subject can be organized and displayed. This assemblage by Betye Saar shows us how using different pieces of medium can bring about the wholeness of the point of view in which the artist is trying to portray. So in part, this piece speaks about stereotyping and how it is seen through the eyes of an artist.
Ofili, compared to Yinka Shoniabre, has never abandoned the idea that notions of race and identity are important factors within his artwork, Ofili quite simply understands that playing along side his stereotypes has offered his career for where he is today. ‘…Portraiture and black subjectivity represent important philosophical vectors in Ofili’s powerful figurative art, as if this conjunction between figuration and representation were not already visibly defined in the 181 watercolours.’ (Okwui Enwezor : Chris Ofili : Tate : 72)
“The Compound”, by S.A. Bodeen, is a story that shows how a rich family goes through their new live of living in an underground nuclear bunker while dealing with the insanity that comes along with it. Unlike some books that focus on the post-apocalyptic setting, instead of focusing on the dangers that a character faces in life, they are up against the conflicts of their own mind.
The figures are disjointed, having multiple arms and legs, blending into one another. Almost unrecognizable. The figures have a distinct feminine quality, aligning with the common primitive associations. The bodies all have a pasty moonlight glow, with eerie facial expressions. The background of sugar cane identifies the setting as a Cuban sugarcane field, opening the aware viewer’s eyes to the political commentary the piece possess. The image, however confusing and chaotic, is aimed to address the history of slavery in colonial Cuba, an issue Lam addresses in many of his works.
By carefully studying and focusing on technique, both Degas’ soft pastel drawing “The Large Green Dancers” and Boucher’s “Young Country Girl Dancing” utilized limited color palettes, the generation of movement, and reflection of light to reveal an impression of women perceived by the artist.
Art is something that can only be achieved with the manipulation of the imagination. This is successful when using objects, sounds, and words. Richard Wright and Amira Baraka brought the power of art into the limelight. Wright’s perception of art was for it to be used as a means of guidance, one that could uplift the Negro towards bigger and better goals. Baraka’s perspective of art was for it to be used as an active agent, one that could kill and then imprint society permanently. Baraka and Wright both wanted the Negro to see that there was a much brighter future ahead of them. Both wanted art to leave a stain, a stain that could not be easily erased, washed, or bleached. Both believed that Black Art had no need to be silent but instead daring.