• Christalle Bodiford

Black (Art) History Month

While I'm a strong believer that Black History Month should not be condensed into one month each year, I do feel that it's important to honor Black History Month by highlighting Black artists and providing resources for you to educate yourself and others. I strongly encourage you to continue researching and learning about Black artists, because they are sadly not a focus in art education - a true tragedy! (in my experience)

Black History Month artwork by student Lara Garay circa 2018.

I am currently in the middle of an out-of-state relocation, so I will be sharing resources from other educators in this blog post, due to a chaotic schedule and not being able to create my own graphics/lesson plans at the moment. So please, enjoy these art education tools from fellow art teachers and I hope you'll give the questions critical thought and attention.

If you want the (extremely) short version of Black art history visit Black Art In America for 'A Very Abbreviated Version of Black Art History or 13 Important Black Visual Artists Everyone Should Know.

Please note, some of these artists will be modern and others from past decades - all artists and artwork styles are equally important to the evolution of art and art movements.

Jean-Michel Basquiat

I'm going to begin with Jean-Michel Basquiat because I feel he is probably one of, if not the, most well known Black artists in America.

Jean-Michel Basquiat was a Neo-Expressionist painter in the 1980s. He is best known for his primitive style and his collaboration with pop artist Andy Warhol.

Neo-expressionism is a style of late modernist or early-postmodern painting and sculpture that emerged in the late 1970s. Neo-expressionists were sometimes called Transavantgarde, Junge Wilde, or Neue Wilden. It is characterized by intense subjectivity and rough handling of materials.

Jean-Michel Basquiat was of Haitian-American (father) and Puerto Rican (mother) descent.

Art Project: Basquiat-Inspired Self-Portraits

For more info check out MyBlackHistory.net


Educational Slide: MyArtLesson.com

Video: PBS via YouTube

Bio: Biography.com

Neo-expressionism: Wikipedia

Art Project: Art Room Britt

Mary Lee Bendolph

This next artist is an Alabama native, like me, and her artistic talents have been passed down from her mother's love of quilting. Interestingly, I saw an article shared about her quilting group this morning in my virtual art teacher group, and they are now selling their beautiful, handmade quilts on Etsy via their nine individual shops!

Gee's Bend: From Quilt to Print

(approximately 15 minutes)

The Quilts of Gee's Bend

(approximately 27 minutes)

The Quiltmaker's of Gee's Bend

(approximately 56 minutes)

Art Project: Gee's Bend Quilt Collage