The city of Chicago, particularly its South Side, has rivaled Harlem as an important locus for African American culture. While it has been rightfully celebrated for its contributions to jazz, Chicago has also been a flourishing center for the visual arts.
African Americans in Art provides an overview of the concerns surrounding race in art, celebrates the achievements of a number of gifted African American artists, and provides a broad and multi-faceted view of American art and culture. It includes a stunning portfolio of images illustrated in full color along with four intriguing essays. An examination of a striking daguerreotype of Abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass is followed by two essays discussing the work of seminal, Chicago-based artists: the complex, engaging paintings of Archibald J. Motley, Jr., and the impassioned sculpture of Marion Perkins. The fourth essay looks at recent, mixed-media work by Lorna Simpson, Carrie Mae Weems, and Willie Robert Middlebrook.