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African-American Art

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From its origins in early eighteenth century slave communities to the end of the twentieth century, African-American art has made a vital contribution to the art of the United States. African-American Art provides a major reassessment of the subject, setting the art in the context of the
African-American experience. Here, Patton discusses folk and decorative arts such as ceramics, furniture, and quilts alongside fine art, sculptures, paintings, and photography during the 1800s. She also examines the New Negro Movement of the 1920s, the era of Civil Rights and Black Nationalism
during the 1960s and 70s, and the emergence of new black artists and theorists in the 1980s and 90s.
New evidence suggests different ways of looking at African-American art, confirming that it represents the culture and society from which it emerges. Here, Patton explores significant issues such as the relationship of art and politics, the influence of galleries and museums, the growth of black
universities, critical theory, the impact of artists collectives, and the assortment of art practices since the 1960s. African-American Art shows that in its cultural diversity and synthesis of cultures it mirrors those in American society as a whole.

320 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 1998

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Sharon F. Patton

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5 stars
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3 stars
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Displaying 1 - 4 of 4 reviews
December 30, 2020
This was my textbook for my African American Art History class. I am so glad I took that class, and this is a good introduction to an expansive topic that doesn't get nearly enough exposure. I truly appreciated learning about the hundreds of years of art that contributed to the American heritage created by African Americans. The book started with colonial times and discussed how enslaved Africans brought over their cultures and traditions from their lands in the ways in which they built their shelters and also in textile and pottery. They were also known for their skill as artisans and craftspeople, often their work going unsigned. I had no idea about Dave the Potter, who was a phenomenal pottery craftsperson who signed his creations and also wrote poems.

The text basically goes in chronological order, and discusses the various periods, movements and African American artists. The photographs are excellent and in full color, and the visual analysis of the works help to understand the intent and the formal qualities of each work.

It's very hard to encapsulate four hundred years of history into an approximately 300 page book, but it was very well done. I appreciate the scholarship that has been done and continues to be done on the subject of African-American art history.
11 reviews
June 4, 2019
Excellent introduction to some of the major African American artists. i return to this book again and again for reference.
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39 reviews
March 8, 2017
In dire need of an update or revision to include contemporary artists, but a very important compilation of the achievements of African American artists until 1990.
Displaying 1 - 4 of 4 reviews

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