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October 14, 2022 — January 22, 2023

This exhibition featuring 30 prints and sculptures celebrates artist Elizabeth Catlett and honors a half-century of her artistic activism in support of women, African Americans, and Mexican laborers. Using a stylized Modernist approach to figurative works, Catlett addresses themes including Black identity, motherhood, civil rights, and labor in this exhibition — issues she tackled with more freedom by emigrating permanently to Mexico in 1947. 

Drawn from the personal collection of artist and art historian Dr. Samella Lewis, the exhibition also includes works by Lewis, for whom Catlett was a friend and mentor, and Catlett’s husband, Francisco Mora, with whom she worked at the famed communal graphics workshop Taller de Gráfica Popular in Mexico City.  

Organized by Landau Traveling Exhibitions, Los Angeles, CA.

Image above: Singing Their Songs, 1992

All Images © 2022 Mora-Catlett Family / Licensed by VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY

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"I am inspired by black people and Mexican people, my two peoples."

-Elizabeth Catlett, 1970

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About the Artist

In an artistic career spanning seven decades, Elizabeth Catlett (1915 – 2012) granted dignity to the underrepresented.  Her renderings of laborers, women, and African Americans referenced social issues pertinent in both the United States as well as her adopted home of Mexico.  Hers was an art of, and addressed to, black and Mexican working classes.

© Photo: Fern Logan

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Recorded October 14, 2022

The Ritual of Elizabeth Catlett

Wendell Brown — fiber artist, associate professor of art, and director of the Henry Ponder Gallery at Benedict College — joins Jackie Adams, CMA director of art and learning, to discuss Brown’s formative years working with both Elizabeth Catlett and Samella Lewis during his time as director of art education at Hampton University, among other topics surrounding the featured artist.

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Printmaking

Printmaking is the art of transferring images from a matrix onto another surface, frequently paper or fabric. Traditional printmaking techniques include woodcut, etching, engraving, and lithography. Prints are often limited edition, with the artist numbering each print and destroying the matrix afterward. 

Image:
There is a woman in every color, 1975

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