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10 african- american artists you should know [black history month] Afro Black art lesson

In celebration of Black History Month next month, it's important to recognize and appreciate the profound impact African-American artists have had on the world of art. Their unique perspectives, shaped by their experiences and heritage, have given rise to a rich tapestry of Afro Black art that continues to inspire and influence today's generation. Here are ten African-American artists whose works you should definitely know.

1. Jean-Michel Basquiat

Jean-Michel Basquiat was a self-taught artist who began his career by spray-painting graffiti on buildings in Lower Manhattan. His neo-expressionist paintings were noted for their poignant commentary on power structures, colonialism, and systemic racism. Basquiat's raw artistic style is a powerful representation of Afro Black art that continues to resonate with audiences today.

2. Faith Ringgold

Faith Ringgold is renowned for her narrative quilts that tell stories about race and gender in America. Her most famous piece, "Tar Beach," depicts a young black girl dreaming of flying over New York City. Ringgold’s work has been instrumental in highlighting the intersectionality of race and gender in Afro Black art.

3. Jacob Lawrence

Jacob Lawrence was one of the first nationally recognized African-American artists who depicted everyday life experiences of black people in America through his paintings. His 60-panel Migration Series narrates the mass movement of African Americans from the rural South to the urban North during the early 20th century.

4. Kara Walker

Kara Walker is best known for her room-size tableaux of black cut-paper silhouettes that explore themes of race, gender, sexuality, violence, and identity. Her controversial work often confronts viewers with uncomfortable truths about America's history.

5. Kehinde Wiley

Kehinde Wiley gained international recognition for his vibrant portraits of young black men posed in the style of classical European paintings. His work challenges traditional notions of power and representation in art.

The Influence of Afro Black Art

Afro Black art has significantly shaped the global art landscape, influencing a wide range of artistic styles and movements. It has played a pivotal role in challenging stereotypes, promoting social justice, and celebrating black culture and identity.

6. Augusta Savage

Augusta Savage was a prominent sculptor during the Harlem Renaissance. Despite facing racial and gender discrimination, she became an influential teacher and advocate for African-American artists.

7. Romare Bearden

Romare Bearden is best known for his innovative use of collage to depict aspects of African-American life in the United States. His work often incorporated elements from jazz music, literature, and his personal experiences.

8. Betye Saar

Betye Saar is a mixed-media artist whose assemblages confront racism and sexism. Her most famous piece, "The Liberation of Aunt Jemima," transformed the racist caricature into a symbol of black power.

9. Gordon Parks

Gordon Parks was a groundbreaking photographer, musician, writer, and film director who used his camera to expose the realities of life for African-Americans. His poignant images continue to influence contemporary discussions about race and social justice.

10. Amy Sherald 

Amy Sherald gained widespread recognition when she was commissioned to paint former First Lady Michelle Obama's official portrait. Her distinctive style often features monochromatic subjects against brightly colored backgrounds.

Celebrating Afro Black Art

As we celebrate Black History Month, it's essential to acknowledge the immense contributions African-American artists have made to the world of art. Their works have not only enriched our cultural heritage but also sparked important conversations about race, identity, and social justice that continue today.

By exploring Afro Black art through these ten artists' works, we can gain a deeper understanding of their experiences as African-Americans while appreciating their unique artistic expressions. Let's continue to celebrate and support these artists and their invaluable contributions to the art world.

If you're looking to bring more afro art by a Black woman to your walls, Lori in Theory has a wide selection.

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