The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Feb 26, 2013

Catch up on some black art history

Posted by Anne Tschida

Examples of Afro-Cuban art.

There are a number of shows and events associated with Black History Month around town. Although work from African Americans, Afro-Caribbeans and Africans show up on walls throughout the year here in Miami, it’s not with enough frequency as our diverse population would warrant.

Maybe that can start to change. Over at University of Miami’s College of Arts & Sciences Gallery, an art and film exhibition called “Africa in Cuba: A Visual and Film Narrative” features local and other diaspora artists and filmmakers of Afro-Cuban descent. It’s a pretty big range of work. Curated by Ludlow Bailey, who currently lives in St. Thomas and has produced shows in the Caribbean, Europe and the United States, the exhibit has included panels and discussions to bring to life the artistic output of this particular, unique culture.

Eight visual artists are featured, including local Tomas Esson; the movies of three filmmakers; and the documentary photography of UM African studies professor Patti Rose.

Examples of Afro-Cuban art Examples of Afro-Cuban art.

On Saturday, March 2, visiting artist Hew Locke will talk with Yale University’s Kobena Mercer, professor of art and African American Studies, at the UM gallery as part of a MAM series of talks. They will discuss African American, Caribbean and Black British trends in Modern and contemporary art, including the lingering influences of monarchy and migration, and specific forms such as masking and architectural heritage. Locke will also talk about aspects of his work that relate to political and aesthetic traditions. Locke will return next fall to install his work for the opening of the new museum, one of four international commissioned artists.

“Africa in Cuba: A Visual and Film Narrative” runs through March 5; “Prisoners of the Sun: A Conversation With Hew Locke and Kobena Mercer” takes place at 2 p.m., at the University of Miami Coral Gables campus, College of Arts & Sciences Gallery, 1210 Stanford Dr. (Wesley Foundation building), Coral Gables;


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