In Retrospect: the African-American Cultural Center at 25
An Exhibition Series, Oral History and Archival Project
The second of three installments, the summer 2016 gallery installation of In Retrospect features the works of five Chicago area artists who exhibited at the African-American Cultural Center between 1991-2012 as a part of the Center’s long running Visiting Artists’ Series. Focusing attention to the theme of “environment,” the summer 2016 series displays fine art photographs, mixed media and paintings by artists whose works have been exhibited widely throughout Chicago, the United States and abroad. Participating artists include photographer Cousandra Armstrong, visual artist Donna Radcliffe, and mixed media artists Katie V. Flowers-Smith, Alfonso “Piloto” Nieves Ruiz and RHB.
In the world of visual art, a retrospective exhibition or compilation presents the development of a body of work, usually of a particular artist, over a period of time. In literature, a retrospective narrator recalls past events, which readers consider in light of the narrator’s current setting. Retrospective narratives highlight the changes in the narrator as a result of his or her involvement in these past events.
The opening reception, May 26, features remarks by the visiting artists.
The final of three installments, the fall exhibit “In Retrospect” features the works of six Chicago area artists who previously exhibited (1991–2012) at the African American Cultural Center as a part of the center’s long-running Visiting Artists Series. The artworks also introduce the Center’s 2016-2017 theme: “A Year of Remedies.” They reflect upon the state of Black women’s centrality in Africa and its diaspora, convey aspects of African heritage through quilt-making, offer spiritual restoration through creative practices, promote care for one’s inner and outer beauty as well as environments, and attempt to reconcile multiple world views within communities of African descent. Together, the works in this exhibition offer a broad spectrum of healing practices that soothe the pain we absorb from our era’s repeated manifestations of violence.