October 29, 2018

"New Scholarship in African American Art History"

Hunter College

"The Black Artist" panel at the Art Students League, New York, March 2, 1971, from Black Artists in America, a film by Oakley N. Holmes, Jr. From left: Vivian Browne, Edmund B. Gaither, Faith Ringgold, Benny Andrews, Hale Woodruff, Alvin Hollingsworth. Courtesy Hunter College.

In conjunction with the exhibition Acts of Art and Rebuttal in 1971 at Hunter College’s Leubsdorf Gallery, the Department of Art and Art History is hosting a day-long symposium devoted to recent scholarship in African American Art History. Acts of Art and Rebuttal revisits the Black Emergency Cultural Coalition’s stance against Whitney Museum’s Contemporary Black Artists in America show, and the exhibition they helped organize in response at Acts of Art, a small artist-run gallery in Greenwich Village. The Acts of Art exhibition, Artists in Rebuttal to the Whitney Museum Exhibition: Black Artists in Rebuttal, spoke to issues of identity, visibility, and the politics of representation. Those issues continue to engage both critical art histories of African American Art in the postwar period, and current art practice.

LeRonn P. Brooks, assistant professor in the Department of Africana Studies at Lehman College, City University of New York

Bridget Cooks, associate professor in the Department of African American Studies and Department of Art History at the University of California Irvine

Valerie Cassel Oliver, Sydney and Frances Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Cheryl Finley, associate professor in the Department of the History of Art and Visual Studies at Cornell University

Cherise Smith, chair and associate professor of African and African Diaspora Studies, and Executive Director of the Galleries at Black Studies, University of Texas at Austin

Tobias Wofford, assistant professor in the Department of Art History, Virginia Commonwealth University

The symposium begins at 9:30am and continues until 6pm, and will be followed by a reception. The event is free and open to the public, but seating is limited.

Register for the symposium

Acts of Art and Rebuttal in 1971 at Hunter's Leubsdorf Gallery, 132 East 68th Street in Manhattan, through November 25, 2018, features works by Benny Andrews, Betty Blayton-Taylor, Vivian Browne, James Denmark, Cliff Joseph, Richard Mayhew, Dindga McCannon, Ademola Olugebefola, Haywood Bill Rivers, and Frank Wimberley. The gallery is open Wednesday–Sunday, 1–6pm.

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