(Photo by Venturelli/Getty Images)
With Black History Month drawing to a close, we are still continuing to highlight the gamechangers of art in Black History. Today, we are highlighting, conceptual artist Kara Walker.
Walker was born in Stockton, California on November 26th,1969. The daughter of a painter, Walker became interested in art at the early age of three. At the age of 13, her and her parents moved to Stone Mountain, Georgia, where she experienced racial disparity ultimately making her feel unwelcomed.
Walker attended the Atlanta College of Art with an interest in painting and printmaking. Her focus was on race-specific issues. She went on to attend graduate school at the Rhode Island School of Design, where her work focus and work expanded to sexual themes based on portrayals of African Americans.
It was in 1994 where she debuted her first installation called Gone: An Historical Romance of a Civil War as It Occurred Between the Dusky Thighs of One Young Negress and Her Heart. This installation piece was Walker’s first success that led to being seen at the Wooster Gardens now called Sikkema Jenkins & Co.
Kara Walker has a collection of solo exhibitions that help solidify her success and helped her receive the MacArthur Foundation in 1998. Walker’s legacy has inspired many young artists to come after her like Kehinde Wiley, Hank Willis-Thomas and Wangechi Mutu.
View this post on Instagram
I first discovered @kara_walker_official’s work in the late 1990s. Her work is daring, thought provoking, haunting and beautiful. She is singular in her generation. I was lucky enough to see her work evolve through the last two decades and she gets better and better. Her 2014 installation “A Subtlety, or the Marvelous Sugar Baby“ was one of the most exciting things to happen in American art or the history of the city of New York. #blackhistorymonth #blackexcellence #karawalker #sugarbaby