February 1- March 5, 2017
Opening Reception, Feb. 15, 6-10pm
Featuring an installation/performance by Lumane Luma » more info
David LaChapelle, Ralph Gibson, Kehinde Wiley, Ed Paschke, Sono Arima, Paul Aresu, Mickalene Thomas, Jeffrey Spencer Hargrave, Chi Modu, Shepard Fairey, Seydou Keita, Brian Ashley White, Helen Stummer, Ivan Wittenstein, Fiorentina DeBiasi, Barbara Beirne, Conrad Botes, Andre Cypriano, Arturo Toulenov, Greg Smith.
Contemporary Art and Editions presents AFRO, an eclectic mix of works from outsider and street art to more well known artists of this generation. Almost all of the works in the show are from the personal collection of the gallerist Greg Smith and at one included work, “In Memory Amadou Diallo”, which has been exhibited by the New Museum, was created by him.
Political themes of the struggle for freedom and freedom of expression are central to any exhibition celebrating African-‐American history. But there is very little in this show to evoke sadness. The collection tends to focus on positivity in lives already achieved and taken for granted in our culture. Thus we see Regina Carter gracefully embracing her cherished violin, Tupac Shakur the singularly talented poet as viewed though the eye of Tina DeBiasi, Michael Jordan rendered in a neoclassical profile amid the acid color energy of Ed Paschke, American cultural icons on the left and right in sparkling portraits of Michelle Obama, Condoleeza Rice and Oprah Winfrey by Mickalene Thomas, and exuberant renditions of Matisse classics inhabited by wild black beauty avatars in paintings by Jeffrey Spencer Hargrave. An addition to the show is the availability of a beautiful book by the famous photographer Chi Modu. A special closing party event is planned for the first week in March for an in-‐person signing of Chi’s classic coffee table photographic essay UNCATEGORIZED.
Yet also present are a few works that speak to a darker history or contemporary human experience including “Sonny” a 1989 portrait by the street artist Gunther Temech, a small group of works by the South African artist Conrad Botes and some touching, bittersweet pieces by Shepard Fairey, Andre Cypriano and Barbara Beirne. Wide ranging in mood, technique and sentiment, each of the 20 artists contained in this show have their own voice, be it soft or be it loud.
For further information, directions, and images, contact the gallery at Contemporaryartandeditions.com or call Greg Smith at (212) 343-0230