Thursday, March 19, 2009
This show really surprised me. I’d been warned it was mostly “anthropology.” But for me, the African craft, and the nineteenth century photos of African women "on display," were only background to the main event: a beautifully edited group of works by international, contemporary, black women. About themselves.
I just loved seeing these bodies. Photography, video, costumes, totems, installation… as a figurative artist, there are so few shows to inspire me. I understood that as banal as the white woman’s body has become, the black woman’s body is still taboo and dangerous. Black women can be Nude, and with that power these artists deliver strong punches. The work was lovely and shocking at the same time.
This is partially what I’m afraid of: making work this strong.
All images from the catalog, Black Womanhood.