Civil rights activists from the 1950s and 1960s noticed how quickly the Black Lives Matter movement reignited after George Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25. Part of this dynamic was fueled by social media: the Instagram account was in New York @justiceforgeorgenycThe company, which provides a schedule of events and ongoing reporting, has gained more than 200,000 followers within a few weeks.
In recent months, New York Times art critics have cited several reports on black art, history, and thought, including those by curator Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, artist Cauleen Smith and Kara Walker, and architect David Adjaye, who led the consortium that National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington. Here are some other accounts that are among my current favorites.
One area where change is happening most quickly is the removal of statues celebrating men who are associated with colonialism, slavery, and genocide. Monument Lab, founded by the curator and historian Paul M. Farber and the artist Ken Lum in Philadelphia, has been in this case since 2012, mapping, tracking and discussing public art as well as the history and future of the monuments that we have inherited. There’s a lot at stake here: Taxpayers paid about $40 million in the past decade solely for the maintenance of the Confederate monuments; Monument Lab has a map shows their locations. Other contributions introduce themselves what we could install in our public spaces campaign for inclusiveness and the contributions of a larger part of society.
The SUNU Journal is dedicated to pan-African culture. A short video on the journal’s website describes how people can be archivists and “messengers” for the culture of the African diaspora, and Instagram is a good way to spread such information. A recently published post featured Black Star 2 (2012), a painting by the African-American artist Kerry James Marshall that takes advantage of the now ubiquitous red, black and green coloring of black and African liberation flags. Another post draws attention to South Africa Youth Day, which commemorates the Soweto uprising on June 16, 1976, when thousands of students protested an instruction from the apartheid government to prescribe Afrikaans as the language of instruction. The SUNU Journal shows particularly well how struggles and uprisings in the African diaspora are linked.
Duro Olowu, a British fashion designer born in Nigeria, who is also married Thelma Golden, Director and chief curator of the studio museum in Harlem – Instagram is at its best. Mr. Olowu’s clothing was worn by Michelle Obama and Solange, but on social media he loves art, street fashion, and great actors, singers, activists, and executives. A recently published post shows the painting “Sun Ra ”(2016) by Stanley Whitney, a beautiful, color-saturated grid that owes its title to the visionary African-American experimental jazz musician. Another shows a photo of Richard Avedon titled “Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee under the direction of Julian Bond, Atlanta, Georgia” (1963)) from the book “Nothing Personal” (1964), which contains the text by Avedon’s high school friend James Baldwin – a wonderful example of the collaboration between artists and allies.
Platforms like Instagram and YouTube have produced people who are best known for their work in these forms. Willy Ndatira, A London based designer and fashion consultant Anyone with more than 92,000 followers is such a person. Recent contributions include works by Aboriginal artist Richard Bell that borrow Roy Lichtenstein’s pop paintings inspired by comics – replaced by texts such as “Thank god I’m not an Aboriginal! ”Or that of the painter Benny AndrewsNo more games”(1970), who faces American racism, or Eve Arnold’s photographs of students in the early 1960s Training for civil rights resistance, learning not to respond to different forms of harassment. In the early days of the pandemic, Mr. Ndatira offered a wonderfully soothing contribution in the form of a list, reminding his followers that “Not everything has broken off. ”On the list were spring, relationships, love, reading, music, imagination and friendliness. The list ended with “Hope is not canceled”. And then, as if answering Mr. Ndatira’s call, the Black Lives Matter movement went high.