Post-Post Critiques of Racism

956 Words4 Pages
Carrie Mae Weems and Hank Willis Thomas are two contemporary artists who are defying contemporary social and political categories and taking art photo into an engage era. The essays by Annie E Coombes provide a critical analysis of how the contemporary scene is moving beyond categories of post modern, and post race. Both are efforts to rescue contemporary artists who are dealing with forms of oppression from being described as old fashion or out of date. Carrie Mae Weems is an African American photographer. She was born in 1953 in Portland, Oregon and she currently resides in Brooklyn NY. Her work deals with the issues such as identity, racism, gender, etc. Weems moved to San Francisco after high school where she got her BA and then she finished her MFA in San Diego, CA. Her first body of work was “Family Pictures and Stories” which she finished in 1983. Almost all of her work is focused on racism, Gender and finding her own identity as an African American artist. She has won numerous awards for her work in the field of photography. “Friends of Photography named her photographer of the year. She was awarded “the distinguished photographer’s award” in 2005, for making contribution in the realm of photography. Her work has been exhibited across the United States, and internationally. The Coombes article on Weems contrasts the artist work against the political popularity of Obama (among Whites at least). Coombes is arguing that Weems is still relevant and that a critique of racism is still vital in American art. Weems draws on historical views of race but looks at it from a new and distinct way. She finds hidden racist themes in anthropological photographic styles that become very obvious when s... ... middle of paper ... ...n tradition in politics and art that is conscious of race and racism. Both are however moving into new areas and could be called postmodern or post racism. Both critiques are trying to reclaim the post-political, or reposition political involvement in art. Art that is new a fresh connects older critiques of oppression to more recent ones. Reference: Official website of Hank Willis Thomas, http://hankwillisthomas.com/ Retrieve at 12/14/2011. Official website of Carrie Mae Weems, http://carriemaeweems.net/ Retrieve at 12/14/2011. Women in Photography International, http://www.womeninphotography.org/Events-Exhibits/DistinguishedPhotog/CarrieMaeWeems_2005/Weems.html Retrieve at 12/14/2011. W.E.B Du Bois Institute African and African American Research, http://dubois.fas.harvard.edu/hank-willis-thomas Retrieve at 12/14/2011.
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