Saturday, March 28, 2015

new project: the great art of the South

I'm so proud to say I've been invited to write a book about the great American self-taught artists of the South, who, not co-incidentally, are African-American. They include Thornton Dial and the Gee's Bend quilters, whose work has recently been acquired by the Met- (the Metropolitan Museum) in New York. The Met just accepted a bequest of 57 works. This book will pull together many of my lifelong loves: great art, racial progress, the bravery of pioneers who went out on a limb and did marvelous things, and underdogs who have triumphed over a system I know only too well, having grown up in it: the Art World Establishment. Coincidentally, three generations of my family have known Bill Arnett, who championed this cause and saw it through against all the odds. So... the path unfolds and I feel honored beyond measure to apply myself to this task. For those not aware of Thornton Dial or the Gee's Bend quilts, or others who are part of this hidden culture in America, which is the untold story of the greatest art in the US of the past 50 years, I urge you to go to Google and feast your eyes.