Description: Join exhibiting artists Hank Willis Thomas and Meleko Mokgosi in a conversation that explores the power of images. While Thomas’ and Mokgosi’s practices are diverse, both are engaged with history and the idea of the archive. In their work, both interrogate the forces that shape the way in which images travel and circulate through time. This panel examines each artist’s individual approaches to art making, our navigation of images in our daily lives, as well as issues related to representation. Curator and social media expert Kimberly Drew joins the discussion as moderator. The panel is introduced by Petra Richterova, SCAD professor of art history.
Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual photo artist working primarily with themes related to identity, history and popular culture. Thomas has exhibited throughout the U.S. and abroad, including The International Center of Photography, Public Art Fund and Studio Museum in Harlem, New York; The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain; Musée du quai Branly, Paris, France; and Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio, among others. He earned a B.F.A. degree in photography and Africana studies from New York University, as well as an M.F.A. degree and an M.A. degree in photography and visual criticism, respectively, from the California College of Arts.
Born in Francistown, Botswana, Meleko Mokgosi is an artist who works within an interdisciplinary framework to create large-scale, project-based installations. His work explores historical painting, cinematic tropes, psychoanalysis and post-colonial theory, and his studio program interrogates narrative cliches, alongside established European notions of representation, in order to address questions of nationhood, anti-colonial sentiments and the perception of historicized events. Mokgosi earned a B.A. degree from Williams College in 2007, and participated in the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program that same year. He later earned an M.F.A. degree from the interdisciplinary studio program at the University of California at Los Angeles in 2011, and was part of the Artist-in-Residence program at the Studio Museum in Harlem 2011–12.
Kimberly Drew is a writer with a passion for innovation in art, fashion and cultural studies. Drew earned a B.A. degree in art history and African-American studies, with a concentration in museum studies, from Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts. Her blog, Black Contemporary Art, is one of the most popular blogs focused on black artists in the world. Drew’s writing has appeared in Glamour, W, Vogue, Teen Vogue and Lenny Letter. She also serves as a board member for Recess Activities, Inc., and is currently the social media manager at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.
This panel is a part of the "Jacob Lawrence: Lines of Influence" symposium, Oct. 19–20. The symposium is free and open to the public.
"Jacob Lawrence: Lines of Influence" is on view through Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018. The exhibition and symposium are made possible by the generous support of the Jacob and Gwendolyn Knight Lawrence Foundation and the Ford Foundation.