4:01 AM / Friday August 12, 2022

13 Mar 2015

Represent—the exhibit misses the mark

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
March 13, 2015 Category: Local Posted by:

By Kendall Alexander

“Represent: 200 Years of African American Art,” is such a grandiose title that people who love black art would want to flock to the exhibit to see hundreds of pieces from famous black artists showcasing black life in America. 

But unfortunately the exhibit, which is appearing at the Philadelphia Museum of Art until April 5, leaves a whole lot to be desired.  Because many of the pieces were from the museum’s own collection, many had high expectations…which weren’t met.


Among the problems that some visitors had was where the exhibit was located. The Honickman and Berman Galleries are on the ground floor and many thought this placement was indicative of how the community itself is perceived by the Museum.

“It’s on the ground floor, “ said a Security guard. “You know how they do us.”

While the exhibit features a variety of sculptures, paintings, mixed media pieces, furniture, and photographs, it’s not a very large exhibit. The Philadelphia Museum of Art has more than 800 pieces of African American art in its collection, yet there is barely 100 pieces on display to the public. The question becomes, why?  For all the press that was given to this exhibit, it is not worth it.  A visit to the exhibit’s webpage will show a handful of pieces featured through a trailer, which is almost the equivalent of the installment.

Not only is this disheartening, it is depressing.  Anyone who is an avid black art enthusiast knows of many black artists that can be featured and understands that sifting through any of their catalogues is a hard task. But I believe that if this exhibit were done at an African American art museum, it would have featured more pieces. 

The displays of impressionist and European art are filled with great pieces, and yet the work of African American artists is not only in the basement by the gift shop, but is also miniscule? Please! The Philadelphia Museum of Art has to do better with showcasing our contributions to art in this country. Overcoming the oppression of our art is why black art became a thing in the first place.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter

Leave a Comment

Recent News


Pennsylvania universities reject GOP call to freeze tuition

August 5, 2022

Tweet Share Pin Email By Brooke Schultz ASSOCIATED PRESS  HARRISBURG, Pa. — Four Pennsylvania universities said last...


Atlanta’s image challenged by facts of 1906 race massacre

August 5, 2022

Tweet Share Pin Email By Michael Warren associated press ATLANTA— Everyone who moves through downtown Atlanta today...


Back-to-school quiz for parents: Put your vaccination knowledge to the test

August 5, 2022

Tweet Share Pin Email BPT It’s that time of year: Kids are squeezing in the last seconds...


Justices uphold Pennsylvania’s 2019 mail-in voting expansion

August 5, 2022

Tweet Share Pin Email ABOVE PHOTO: Workers count Philadelphia’s mail ballots for the May 18 primary election...

Color Of Money

How much does a funeral cost?

August 5, 2022

Tweet Share Pin Email BPT When a death occurs, it’s normal to wonder – and even worry...

Food And Beverage

What’s Cookin’? Jackfruit Stew

August 5, 2022

Tweet Share Pin Email Tweet Share Pin Email Related Posts What’s Cookin’?: 7 Bean Stew What’s Cookin’?...

The Philadelphia Sunday Sun Staff