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Hank Willis Thomas, Liberty, 2021, Mixed media with U.S. prison uniforms

Hank Willis Thomas | Kayne Griffin

Artillery Mag

January 4, 2022

For New York based multi-media artist Hank Willis Thomas, art and politics are intertwined. He draws from history, advertising (he made a series based on the Nike swoosh), and current events to create works that address issues of racial injustice, identity politics, and more recently, the meaning of freedom. With formal integrity and conceptual savvy, the impeccably crafted fabric pieces in the exhibition Another Justice: Divided We Stand are assembled from American flags and prison uniforms and literally “investigate the fabric of our nation.” Across the works, Thomas juxtaposes the red and white stripes from the American flag with prison garb in various colors. While works like A New Constellation and Imaginary Lines (all works 2021) separate and repurpose the stars and stripes, it is the text-based pieces carefully cut and collaged from prison uniforms and flags that are the most compelling.

Kathryn Scanlan on Louise Nevelson

Kathryn Scanlan on Louise Nevelson

Artforum

In 1945, after the death of her parents, Louise Nevelson (1899–1988) used money from her family’s estate to buy a four-story brownstone at 323 East Thirtieth Street in Manhattan. She fixed it up with the help of a friend and a loan from a gallerist who’d shown her work but hadn’t been able to sell any of it.

Hank Willis Thomas, America, 2021, mixed media with U.S. flags

For Freedoms and Hank Willis Thomas Question America’s Systems of Incarceration

Cultured Mag

December 15, 2021

The art collaborative and founding artist Hank Willis Thomas have partnered to create Another Justice, a series of exhibits and talks that confront the truth about modern-day slavery.

Hank Willis Thomas, Liberty, 2021, Mixed media with U.S. prison uniforms

Hank Willis Thomas: ‘The slave era is not something that is in the past’

The Guardian

December 01, 2021

The artist discusses his new exhibition which mixes American flags with prison uniforms to examine whether the land of the free is really free for all.

Willie Birch, Backyard View, 2021, charcoal and acrylic on paper

Willie Birch on making art a neighborhood affair

Artforum

November 23, 2021

Throughout his multifarious six-decade career, Willie Birch has mined creative traditions ranging from European painting to Yoruba spirituality to conjure visions of the rich culture of New Orleans, as in the series of charcoal-and-acrylic grisaille streetscapes on view through January 23, 2022, at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art as part of “Prospect.5: Yesterday We Said Tomorrow.”

Artist Rosha Yaghmai with a detail from her work “Lavender Aura,” 2021

Rosha Yaghmai: ‘Drifters’ at MCASB: Painting and Sculpture with a Psychedelic Edge

Santa Barbara Independent

November 3, 2021

Drifters, Rosha Yaghmai’s new solo exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara (MCASB), divides rather than cuts the MCASB gallery space.

Hank Willis Thomas, America, 2021, mixed media with U.S. flags

The Culture Lover’s November Guide

Harper's Bazaar

November 1, 2021

From rousing in-person dance premieres to a slew of art shows and everyone’s favorite televised parade, there’s so much to be excited—and thankful—for when it comes to this month’s wealth of cultural programming. Catch Gibney Company’s debut at The Joyce Theater in New York or get to know trailblazing artist Hank Willis Thomas at his solo gallery show in Los Angeles. 

Willie Birch, “White Picket Fence #2 (Myth or Reality),” 2019, charcoal drawing of streetscapes on display in Prospect New Orleans

A Show With Its Host City, New Orleans, as the Protagonist

New York Times

October 20, 2021

“We all felt after this devastating year, but especially after Ida, we had to pick ourselves up and make this show happen,” said Nick Stillman, the executive director of Prospect New Orleans, an international contemporary art triennial. Prospect was conceived in 2007 after the catastrophe of Hurricane Katrina with the idea of helping New Orleans rebuild.

Installation view of Mika Tajima, Untitled, Limited Edition, 2012

Valeria Napoleone Puts Ladies First

W Magazine

October 19, 2021

At home with the collector who focuses exclusively on female artists.

Hank Willis Thomas, At the twilight's last gleaming?, 2021, mixed media

Redesigning America's Flag: Six New Takes on Old Glory

New York Times | OPINION

September 28, 2021

The American flag is a potent piece of national iconography, but its design shifted frequently until the early 1900s. What if it were redesigned today? We asked artists and graphic designers to try. The flags they came up with reflect a mix of approaches. Some are functional designs, others artistic renderings; some represent America as it could be, others how the artist sees the country now.

Installation view of "Rosha Yaghmai: Afterimages," 2021, at Kayne Griffin, Los Angeles

Complicating Light and Space: Rosha Yaghmai at Kayne Griffin

Art in America

August 23, 2021

A fireball pops from a dark background suffused with a dismal yellow glow. Below the red-orange orb, vague bluish masses border a deep-violet promontory. As one approaches this image, wavy patterns shimmer like mirages, confounding the eyes and interrupting the visual experience induced by Rosha Yaghmai’s painting, Afterimage, Red Eye, rendered in acrylic and ink on organza and cotton.

Installation view of "Kiki Kogelnik: Falling" at Kayne Griffin, Los Angeles

Kiki Kogelnik, a Pop Artist With a Feminist Bent

Hyperallergic

August 15, 2021

“I always want to do what I’m afraid of,” the late artist Kiki Kogelnik wrote in a statement she gave in the mid-1970s. She was referring to her parachute jump off the iconic steel tower at Coney Island, a moment when her desire for the unknown overcame her sense of danger and she leapt into space. But she was also remarking on the conditions of her art, indicating the boundaries she’d crossed both geographically and pictorially.

Installation view of Peter Shire at Dries Van Noten's The Little House, Los Angeles

Peter Shire Imbues Joy and Color into New Show at L.A.'s The Little House

Cultured Magazine

July 27, 2021

Each of Shire’s pieces embodies his true love for Southern California, and his own playful spirit, a sentiment that has given his work distinction within the international art world over his many decades of practice. 

Anthony Hernandez, Screened Pictures, 2018/2019, photo print

The Afterlife of Detritus: MacArthur Park

Air/Light Magazine

July 25, 2021

I began carrying a 35 mm camera and would take pictures on the street as I biked to and from the pool, cutting through the park. I was learning to see the city in a different way because of Anthony’s street pictures. I was learning how to look, how to observe.

Installation view of "Rosha Yaghmai: Afterimages," 2021, at Kayne Griffin, Los Angeles

July Editor’s Picks

Contemporary Art Review LA (CARLA)

July 23, 2021

Afterimages—those neon shapes that occur in our field of vision after staring at an image or object—are like a strange kind of haunting. A scene becomes warped, faint, and technicolor, like memories that fade over time even as the details of their retelling become exaggerated. Rosha Yaghmai’s new works at Kayne Griffin elicit this phenomenon in both form and title through dreamy, abstract fields of color that bleed and blur, disallowing any sharp image to emerge. 

Installation view of "Rosha Yaghmai: Afterimages," 2021, at Kayne Griffin, Los Angeles

Top 3 This Week

KCRW Art Insider

July 20, 2021

At Kayne Griffin on La Brea, Rosha Yaghmai’s paintings in her solo show “Afterimages” dance with vibrant moire patterns as you walk around them

Installation view of Robert Irwin’s “unlights” at Kayne Griffin, Los Angeles

Review: Robert Irwin’s virtuoso light art, minus the light

Los Angeles Times

January 28, 2021

In a body of work from 2018, artist Robert Irwin, an originator in the 1960s of the distinctive genre known as Light and Space art, did something simple but surprising: He switched off the lights in his art.

Hank Willis Thomas, "A Suspension of Hostilities," 2019, car installation

At home with artist Hank Willis Thomas

Wallpaper*

January 14, 2021

In our ongoing ‘At Home With’ profile series, we go home, from home, with artists to hear about what they’re making, what’s making them tick, and the moments that made them. Here, we speak to American artist Hank Willis Thomas about how a premonition in January 2020 led him to the forefront of one of the most overdue cultural reckonings of the last 100 years

Rendering of "The Embrace" by Hank Willis Thomas and MASS Design Group for Boston Commons

A Racial Equity Monument, From Hank Willis Thomas, Is Set for Boston

New York Times

January 14, 2021

The memorial, called “The Embrace” and designed by Thomas and architects at MASS Design Group, will honor the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King.

Hank Willis Thomas' "Unity," 2019, bronze sculpture at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge, New York

What should our monuments of the future look like?

CNN Style

June 17, 2020

Monuments are critical tools in shaping the values and identity of society. Most of what we know about many ancient cultures -- Egypt, Great Zimbabwe, Greece, Rome -- are through public monuments. So we have to imagine that much of what future generations will know about us is through the monuments we choose to put up and preserve.

There isn't that much public space dedicated to contemplation. Many of the images and objects we see outside are advertisements that are directing us to buy something rather than asking us to reflect on something.

In two of the public sculptures that I've created, "Unity," of an arm pointing skyward, at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City; and the forthcoming work, "The Embrace," a tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr. and Coretta Scott King, in Boston, I referenced incredibly common gestures that personify all of us.