Black Art and Activism

21st April 2017 6.30pm – 7.45pm 

Location: 

The Reynolds Room Burlington House

Royal Academy of Arts

Piccadilly


Join artists Sonia Boyce RA, Dr Kimathi Donkor and Jacob V Joyce and arts practitioner and academic Dr Michael McMillan as they discuss whether black artists today are expected to challenge global and national issues of race and representation.

With race relations in the UK and the USA unresolved, what is the potential agency of art in challenging racial prejudice? Could art provide an alternative to protest movements like Black Lives Matter?

Our discussion uses 1930s America as a starting point, a period when African-American artists such as Aaron Douglas and William Johnson actively engaged with issues about race. Dr Michael McMillan asks artists Sonia Boyce RA, Dr Kimathi Donkor and Jacob V Joyce whether it is the responsibility of black artists today to challenge global and national issues of racial prejudice? Can art and spaces for art contribute to an ongoing dialogue between visual culture and activism in the context of racial prejudice? How do artists see their role? Is art an effective vehicle for protest, grief or hope?

All ticket prices include one complimentary drink at a reception following the event.

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