Heading into the holiday, most of us will be surrounded by family, some like me will not, but it all got me thinking about heritage, place and self-determination. How much of who we are is tied up in family or community? How much in the freedom to live the life we choose? Here are some online exhibitions to browse while pondering:
Between Worlds at the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum shares the amazing work of Bill Traylor, the only person born into slavery who left behind a substantial body of art. I found the images to be so profound and enjoyed his deceptively playful style. I enjoyed the very non-snooty tour video by the curator above, but if you prefer, just scroll to the bottom of this page to see a fairly large gallery of his work. You can click on each image for a larger view.
Over at Urban Kultur Blog, they regularly share an awesome array of the best street art. In my book, they’ve taken up the void left behind by Vandalog which I miss terribly. I especially liked the Downtown LA Street Art Walking Tour. Spend some time with these murals. I have always enjoyed the way graffiti artists play with the third dimension and the Low Bros. dog above demonstrates just that, but there are tons of images online. Royyal Dog’s Love Each Other, (featured at the top of this post and below) is enlarged in spots about a third of the way down the page, truly breathtaking what an LA artist can do with spray paint. Considered as a whole, this photo exhibit represents many of the current movements in street art–an education in itself.
And over at the ultra-hip 21c Museum Hotel in Oklahoma City, I got to see a fab exhibit, Pop Stars! Popular Culture and Contemporary Art. They have a small gallery of included works online at the link, but I wanted to share my snapshot of Titus Kaphar’s Destiny IV. To me, it was the most powerful piece in the surprisingly-large exhibit. Really, it’s three mid-size galleries, not just your typical hotel lobby.
And finally, there’s a really cool new gallery in Mumbai, India that is showing an exhibit on early Bengal artists. I loved this work and wanted to share Quest of Identity: Early Modern Art in Bengal at Akara Art. When you click over, tour the Installation View first, for atmosphere, then go into the closeups of the art. I love the way Sudhir Khastagir’s, Untitled (Drummer) becomes a cannon, but you’ll have to visit their page to see it. The painting to the right is Somnath Hore, Untitled, lithograph. If you don’t already know how much I dig lithographs, take a look at the Honore Daumier exhibit in the post below. And no matter where you are, I wish you self-determination and gratitude this week.