Kara Walker: Artist Studio

October 12, 2018

Kara Walker Silhouettes

I enjoyed taking a behind the scenes look at artist Kara Walker and her studio, seeing how her thought process leads up to actual art. Her subject matter, on the other hand, was a little unsettling to me. Mission accomplished.

Her works may appear to be exaggerations on the surface, but coming from my knowledge, I realize she didn’t have to go very far to reach a level of shock and awe. All she had to do was present it. The use of silhouette collages to convey her messages was an excellent choice, because it allowed you to concentrate directly on the stories being told. A subversive use of the Victorian silhouette art matches perfectly with the overlaying notions of romanticism and adds a level of anonymity to the players as well as a level playing field.

Most interesting to me was Kara’s transition from California to Georgia. What a contrast! I am two years older than she is, and I was born in Tennessee but raised in Michigan. I am familiar with the time frame she is working from. When I was younger, a lot of things went over my head, and it wasn’t until I got older that I realized that even in my lifetime, there was a particular “code of conduct” when visiting the South. #ADOS

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