Start your day with the AFA! Join us for a private tour of Kerry James Marshall: Mastry at the Met Breuer. The tour will be guided by Ian Alteveer, Associate Curator in the Department of Modern and Contemporary Art.
This comprehensive retrospective of some seventy-five paintings by Kerry James Marshall (b. 1955, Birmingham, Alabama) marks the artist’s largest museum exhibition to date. The show spans his remarkable thirty-five year career, from his earliest collages through paintings made in the past two years, revealing the complex and challenging creative output of one of today’s most important living artists.
Marshall is a painter whose work reflects and challenges the time and culture he inhabits. Driven by an examination of the historical dearth and the recent arrival of the black figure in the canon of Western art, he is immersed in the history of painting, particularly the century-long conflict between figuration and abstraction. Marshall presents a vision of American history committed to the narratives—triumphs and failures both—of individual African Americans as well as the concept of blackness as a whole. On the grand scale of the Old Masters, Marshall’s work engages with themes of visibility and invisibility, portraiture and self-portraiture, religious iconography, the politics of Pan-Africanism and black militancy, and the ethics of painting.
The exhibition is made possible by the Ford Foundation, Kenneth and Rosalind Landis, and the H. Tony and Marti Oppenheimer Foundation.
Additional support is provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.
The exhibition is organized by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago; and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.