Larry Ossei-Mensah predicts to Artsy that abstraction by artists of color will become even more prominent in 2023. The genre, Ossei-Mensah believes, is essential to shifting the public’s belief that artists of color should only make representational work that is immediately legible. He refers to Atta.
Artforum notes that Bonolo decided early in her career what she did not want her art practice to be about: the political burden of being a Black woman in South Africa. Born in 1992, the artist found that most of the art history she encountered in her country was charged with the discourses of racial and cultural identity politics. Since her time studying at the Michaelis School of Fine Art in Cape Town, Kavula has been determined to play and experiment with form.
If readers find the broader conversation about abstraction in the hands of Black creatives interesting, you should look at Artsy’s ’23 curator outlook in which Larry Ossei-Mensah predicts that abstraction by artists of color will become even more prominent in 2023.
Saw El at Biennale and was over the moon to walk into NCMA and find that our state is now home to a great piece of his- his modality is similar to Elias Simes, another great hailing from Africa which NCMA has included in the permanent collection. Georgina is also an African artist, who’s work is included because, like El, it reminds me of another artist (Al Loving). Juxtaposing is fun.
Glad I went to see the O’Keefe show at NCMA because I discovered they’ve also got a huge piece from Elias Sime’s show at James Cohan in 2015 (Tightrope 9)- it’s pretty spectacular if you haven’t seen it yet. The composition is clearly non-representational- abstract if you will- but his use of computer parts (and the social and cultural context for the acquisition of the materials) clearly carries a rich depth of content. Even more interesting to me was the conceptual bent he shared with O’Keefe and they both shared with their subject matter- the materials they make work about and from have a visceral attraction for both that comes through loud and clear. Check out his bio for more of this type of color on this amazing artist.