Date of Award
Master of Fine Arts (MFA)
African American art, Black representation
African American Studies | Arts and Humanities | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies
This thesis explores the problem of representing the identities, experiences, and ideasof people of African descent in the United States. It proceeds from the premise that this problem, which can shape everyday personal experiences, has also been critical to African American cultural production. This thesis examines these phenomena in two ways. First, it explores how African American writers grappled with the challenge of representing Black people collectively at various historical moments. Then negotiate the challenges I faced as an artist creating visual representations of multiple themes and facets of the writers' lives, identities, and ideas. Together, the two parts of the thesis provide an opportunity to reflect on configurations of Black people's identities and the complex and contested interpretations of Blackness – i.e., what it means to navigate the category Black.
Ladd, London, "How Shall We Be Known: the Problem and Art of Representing Blackness" (2022). Theses - ALL. 510.
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