Aesthetics in African and African American Art
Traditional styles of art in many parts of Africa is bound by specific cultural practices and beliefs that determine the modes and styles of expression. Every culture’s art is influenced by their mythology and rituals and other elements of culture that signify their ethnic identity. African American artists in the twentieth century similarly used their art as an expression of their identity and culture. As African Americans evolved from identifying as Negro and Colored to Black and Afro-American, the styles and forms of visual art that were representative of their new identities also evolved as they saw themselves in new lights. Using the Reading Assignments provided for this Unit write a brief review essay that discusses how the influences of culture and history have impacted the development of African and African American visual art. Your essay should address each of topics below and include a broadly descriptive introduction that outlines your interpretation and a well focused summary that expresses your unique insights from this Unit.
1. How have African American artists in the twentieth century incorporated stylistic elements from traditional African art in their works?
2. How were changes in social awareness represented in the works of African American painters and sculptors throughout the twentieth century?
3. How was cultural identity portrayed in the hairstyles and fashions displayed in works by African American painters and sculptors in the twentieth century?
APA Format, 712 words