African Americans Take Center Stage In 3 Art Exhibitions (PHOTOS)
From New York to Los Angeles to Amsterdam, African-American beauty and style is on display. Three art exhibitions put it center stage this month, giving us a fresh look (and in some cases, a look back) at the intersections between race, media, gender, class and pop culture.
"Posing Beauty in African American Culture"
The University of Southern California debuted "Posing Beauty" last week, a multimedia exhibit comprised of more than 84 works by renowned artists such as James VanDerZee, Carrie Mae Weems, Robert Mapplethorpe, Weegee and Cecil Beaton. The works are drawn from public and private collections and will be accompanied by a book published by W.W. Norton.
Curator Deborah Willis organized the galleries into three themes -- "Body Image," "Constructing a Pose" and "Model Beauty and Beauty Contests" -- that integrate portraits of unknown, famous and, in some cases, notorious subjects. "The images in this exhibition challenge idealized forms of beauty in art by examining their portrayal and exploring a variety of attitudes about race, class, gender, popular culture and politics as seen through the aesthetics of representation," according to the exhibition description.
"Posing Beauty" runs through December 7.
"Dandy Lion: Articulating a Re(de)fined Black Masculine Identity"