April 15, 2024

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Juxtapoz Magazine – Aaron Douglas @ SCAD MOA: The Harlem Renaissance Reimagined

2 min read
Juxtapoz Magazine - Aaron Douglas @ SCAD MOA: The Harlem Renaissance Reimagined

While the Harlem Renaissance was a profound moment, a time period of heritage that marked the exceptional cross-part of so many artists and thinkers of Black The usa in a certain north Manhattan community, it is also a movement that is timeless. There was no 1 style, but an amalgamation of consciousness and experimentation that extends to the dynamism we see a century later on. Aaron Douglas, the matter of Sermons, an exhibition on see now at the SCAD Museum of Artwork in Savannah, Ga, was a painter, illustrator, muralist, writer, and teacher. He was the type of artist who expressed himself in craft, collaboration, and discussion the conduit at the centre of this exhibition that unites up to date dialogue with the Renaissance alone.

“I imagine Sermons is definitely trying to get the pupils to see how expansive that time can be,” explains curator DJ Hellerman, “but then also attempting to use contemporary artists to push again on a narrow reading through of that background. The Harlem Renaissance that I learned about in university was a great deal narrower, a a great deal a lot more specific kind of Harlem Renaissance than the Harlem Renaissance I uncovered while accomplishing research for the exhibit whether it can be queerness, how diasporic it is, but then also how geographically expansive it was in conditions of the United States.”

Showcasing Kara Walker, Diedrick Brackens, and Khari Johnson Ricks, amid some others, Sermons was structured as a vast-ranging conversation, and as the museum place it, the “constellation of connection” that is uncovered when surveying such an influential period in American heritage. What SCAD MOA completed, and what resonates, is that art is alive, a story to be revisited and reimagined. “The exhibit is intended to mimic the course of action of researching in a large amount of approaches,” Hellerman claimed, “where you stumble on a little something, and you rethink something, and you reconsider it. I consider a exhibit like this will make more home for other people. I believe it’s a way to be expansive. It truly is a way to be generous, and it truly is a way to be extra open. So I believe you can see almost each individual artwork from every vantage point in the present. And that was actually intentional to develop that sort of openness as opposed to a lot more of a linear.” Via an frequently-ignored learn like Douglas, the exhibition displays how historical past pulsates as a result of the a long time and can be revitalized by means of modern day dialogue. A sermon for the ages. —Evan Pricco

Aaron Douglas: Sermons is on view at SCAD MOA by way of January 23, 2023 // This article was initially printed in our Winter 2023 Quarterly

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