"Girl in a Red Dress" (1934). Artist, Charles Henry Alston (1907-1977).
Charles Alston was an painter, sculptor and teacher who was an important figure within the Harlem Renaissance. His painting style initially leaned toward realism in his portraits and large scale murals depicting Black Americans. In the 1940s he turned to Cubism, using sharper line and mask like features perhaps to reflect the urgency and sense of gravity of the burgeoning modern Civil Rights movement.
Alston was born in Charlotte, NC, however at age three his father died and his mother moved to New York. Subsequently, she married Harry P. Bearden, uncle of Romare Bearden. Alston would establish a long term friendship with Romare Bearden. Alston graduated from Columbia University in 1929 and received a master's degree from Columbia Teacher's College in 1931. .
Alston directed art programs and community centers, including the Harlem Workshop. Artist Jacob Laurence was one of his students at Utopia House. He directed 35 artists who created the murals at Harlem Hospital in 1935 and1936, two of which he painted, as part of the Works Progress Administration's Federal Arts Program. He also taught at the Museum of Modern Art and City College of NY. In 1990 his bust of Martin Luther King, Jr. became the first image of a Black American displayed at the White House.
#harlemrenaissance #fineart#americanart#africanamericanart#blackartinamerica#realism#harlem#newyork#charlottenc#romarebearden#jacoblawrence#sculptor#museumofmodernart#moma#harlemhospital #murals
6 days ago
What's Happening in Black Art Today!
According to Artnet.com Swizz Beatz and Alicia Keys Are Opening an Art and Music Center in Upstate New York to Build a ‘Global Creative Community’- Sarah Cascone, August 13, 2019
Hip-hop producer Kasseem “Swizz Beatz” Dean and his wife, Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Alicia Keys, have unveiled plans for a new arts center in the sleepy upstate New York town of Macedon.
Swizz and Keys, who collect artists including Kehinde Wiley, Nina Chanel Abney, Arthur Jafa, KAWS, and Deana Lawson, have reportedly been looking for the right venue for their new Dean Collection Music & Art Campus
The space will showcase the couple's art collection and teach emerging artists about the business side of the industry. The idea, according to the official project description, is to “educate musicians and artists about the business side of the music and art industry, and have a campus and creative atmosphere for learning and expanding opportunities.” The Dean Collection Music & Art Campus appears to be a natural extension of the work that Swizz Beatz has done with No Commission, the free art fair he founded in Miami in 2016 that gives artists 100 percent of all their sales proceeds. The event has since seen editions in the Bronx, London, Shanghai, and Berlin. In 2018, the Dean Collection took that work one step further by giving out $100,000 to help artists looking to stage their own exhibitions—$5,000 each to 20 different artists—through the Dean Collection 20 St(Art)ups initiative. #tdc20#nocommission#aliciakeys#blackarthistory#blackartculture#blackartcollectors#kehindewiley wiley #
🙏🏾"You are your best thing" -Toni Morrison🙏🏾
3 hours ago
“They were women then
My mama's generation
Husky of voice stout of
With fists as well as
How they battered down
How they led
To discover books
A place for us
How they knew what we
Without knowing a page
- Alice Walker 🎨: Mary Sibande, Silent Symphony. 2010.
"[When he died, the legacy of Akhenaten and Nefertiti] was buried—which is why the Germans could unearth Amarna’s sculpture workshops almost intact in the 1890s. The person the priesthood put in charge of destroying Amarna was General Horemheb, the husband of Mutnedjmet—Nefertiti’s younger sister. I’d been thinking of the relationship of Mutnedjmet to Nefertiti because the usual images you saw of her were in processions of Nefertiti followed by her six daughters, and then following them at the end would be Mutnedjmet accompanied by two [small people]. When I realized that it was her husband that destroyed Nefertiti’s city and memory, I could imagine how Mutnedjmet might be feeling, and I knew that I wanted to get past that feeling in relation to Devonia. So, my imagined relationship between Nefertiti and Mutnedjmet enabled me to resolve these issues between my sister’s memory and myself." —Lorraine O'Grady on using her trip to Egypt to grieve for her sister and see herself in her past. (Feb 2016)
🎨: Lorraine O'Grady, Sisters IV. 1980/1988. (L: Devonia’s sister Lorraine, R: Nefertiti’s sister Mutnedjmet).
1 day ago
Make up a story. [...] For our sake and yours forget your name in the street; tell us what the world has been to you in the dark places and in the light. Don't tell us what to believe, what to fear. Show us belief's wide skirt and the stitch that unravels fear's caul. —Toni Morrison, 1993 Nobel lecture
Personally, I’m learning to breathe under water. At a minimum I can hold my breath longer as I practice. The water can wash over my head. Waves might take me over. Succumb to the strength of the tide. I’ll emerge. Stronger. Air in lungs. Alive. Did I also drown? Maybe, but just a little. I didn’t notice, too busy and determined in fighting to emerge.
Define yourself. Rise up.
📷: Gordon Parks, Untitled. 1963.