Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power

Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power
11.09.2019 — 03.15.2020

Kavi Gupta congratulates gallery artists Jae Jarrell, Wadsworth Jarrell, and Gerald Williams on their participation in Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power, which recently opened at the de Young Museum, San Francisco, after traveling from the the Broad Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, London’s Tate Modern, and Crystal Bridges in Bentonville, AR. The exhibition will be on view through March 15, 2020.

This extraordinary exhibition builds on the momentum of Kavi Gupta gallery’s AFRICOBRA 50, a landmark exhibition of original works by the five founding members of AFRICOBRA (African Commune of Bad Relevant Artists)—Gerald Williams, Jae Jarrell, Wadsworth Jarrell, Jeff Donaldson, and Barbara Jones-Hogu—the black artist collective that defined the visual aesthetic of the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and 70s. It also coincides with AFRICOBRA: Nation Time, an official collateral event of the 58th Venice Biennale.

Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power shines a bright light on the vital contribution of Black artists made over two revolutionary decades in American history, beginning in 1963 at the height of the civil rights movement. The exhibition examines the influences, from the civil rights and Black Power movements to Minimalism and developments in abstraction, on artists such as Romare BeardenBarkley HendricksNoah PurifoyMartin PuryearFaith RinggoldBetye SaarAlma ThomasCharles White, and William T. Williams. Los Angeles-based artists appear throughout Soul of a Nation, and more deeply in three specific galleries, foregrounding the significant role of Los Angeles in the art and history of the civil rights movement and the subsequent activist era, and the critical influence and sustained originality of the city’s artists, many of whom have lacked wider recognition.

Featuring the work of more than 60 influential artists and including vibrant paintings, powerful sculptures, street photography, murals, and more, this landmark exhibition is a rare opportunity to see era-defining artworks that changed the face of art in America.