Review: REPRESENT at Indiana State Museum 

****
Mason Archie, "The Road Less Traveled"
  • Mason Archie, "The Road Less Traveled"

Breadth of aesthetic style and depth of subject matter immediately impress in 'REPRESENT: Celebrating Indiana's African-American Artists,' the first exhibition to show the extent to which African-American artists have contributed to the cultural history of Indiana. As curated and hung by Rachel Berenson Perry and Kisha Tandy, the works are presented as both a narrative across time from the 1900s to the present. It's helpful to read Perry’s exhibition catalog introduction, and even more satisfying to visit more than once.

Small in size but huge in scope, REPRESENT takes us all the way from the realities of William Edouard Scott’s 1912 Parisian streets (a forlorn mother and child) to William Rasdell’s 2009 South Africa locale (photos seemingly happy boys, subtly defaced by symbols of gang influence). Wayne Manns upends upends traditional historical narratives by placing a very different cast of characters in the boat at Valley Forge, while Walter Lobyn Hamilton re-uses what we throw away, creating a monumental hairdo from broken vinyl records.

Mae Engron concentrates on connectivity via bright, flowery landscapes; Vance Farrow electrifies with negativity with his landscapes in duotone. Jerome Neal shakes his fingers at so-called truisms via his cellphones in blackface; Roderic Traube celebrates accomplishments despite odds in his portraits.

And so it goes throughout the hall with so much to capture attention about our state of being, to expand imagination and to celebrate the soul. Through July 15 at the Indiana State Museum.

Speaking of REPRESENT: Celebrating Indiana's African-American Artists, Indiana State Museum

  • Talking Freedom Riders at the State Museum
  • Talking Freedom Riders at the State Museum

    An engaged audience was loath to end a July 10 public conversation on the Freedom Riders featuring Indy's first black City-County Councilor, Rozelle Boyd.
    • Jul 14, 2014
  • Rare photo exhibition at Indiana Black Expo
  • Rare photo exhibition at Indiana Black Expo

    A look at three photos from the State Museum's Shadow and Substance: African American Images from The Burns Archive, to be presented during Black Expo.
    • Jun 27, 2014
  • 431 Gallery and the birth of Mass Ave
  • 431 Gallery and the birth of Mass Ave

    The Indiana State Museum is recreating 431 Gallery, a non-profit cooperative open from 1984-1993 that helped launch Mass Ave and the Indy art scene as we now know them.
    • Jun 25, 2014
  • More »

Latest in Visual Arts

  • Black Knight Archive: An alternate history of Chicago's south side
  • Black Knight Archive: An alternate history of Chicago's south side

    Opening Friday at iMOCA, Ian Weaver's Black Knight Archive presents an imagined history of a Chicago-based Black Nationalist group.
    • Jul 29, 2014
  • Good Vibrations: An Appliance Art Show
  • Good Vibrations: An Appliance Art Show

    An expanded version Big Car Collaborative's pop-up show at a Garfield Park area appliance store is opening this Saturday. Think fridge art, writ large.
    • Jul 25, 2014
  • We are all homeless
  • We are all homeless

    Dallas artist Willie Baronet stopped here Saturday on his month-long, nationwide project: Buying signs from the homeless for eventual use in installations and performances.
    • Jul 23, 2014
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Feedback

Recent Comments


Reader Reviews

More by Rita Kohn

© 2014 NUVO | Website powered by Foundation