Faith Ringgold’s Art Featured Around the Country and Abroad #JACBA Newsletter 21Jul2017

Professor Emerita Faith Ringgold Featured in ‘Soul of a Nation’

Featuring more than 150 works by over 60 artists, many on display in the UK for the first time, Soul of a Nation will be a timely opportunity to see how American cultural identity was re-shaped at a time of social unrest and political struggle.

Soul of a Nation will showcase this debate between figuration and abstraction, from Faith Ringgold’s American People Series #20: Die 1967 and Wadsworth Jarrell’s Black Prince 1971 to Frank Bowling’s Texas Louise 1971 and Sam Gilliam’s April 4 1969. A highlight will be Homage to Malcolm 1970 by Jack Whitten, who was awarded the National Medal of Arts by Barack Obama in 2015, which will be going on public display for the very first time.

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Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky by Faith Ringgold 1993 Awardee

‘It Remains Relevant – History Repeats Itself’
Faith Ringgold discusses the importance of art

AT THE time I made American People Series #20: Die, all hell was breaking loose across parts of the United States.

There were riots as people fought for their civil rights.

Not much of this was being recorded in the press or on the TV news, but I saw the violence myself, and felt I had to say something about it.

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Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power, review

Andrews’s Did the Bear Sit Under a Tree? is one of a number of punchy
message-driven works that set the scene: the Stars and Stripes rolled
back to reveal an angry black man waving his fists both at the Flag and
the viewer.  If the execution is none too subtle, with the figure
rendered in rough-hewn sacking-relief with a zip for a mouth, Andrews
wanted to reflect the “raw” aesthetics of his background in rural

Faith Ringgold’s Die creates a frantic pattern of wild-eyed, bleeding
black and white people in which it’s impossible to tell who’s stabbing
or shooting who, all in a compelling pop-expressionist style that isn’t
revisited in the exhibition or, it seems, the artist’s own work.

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Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky by Faith Ringgold 1993 Awardee

Soul of a Nation – Art in the Age of Black Power, exhibition review: Pride and prejudice.
This ambitious and energetic show charts 20 years of the struggles that formed the modern black artistic identity in America

Tate Modern’s Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power
is a trip through 20 years of black artists in the US experimenting
with what black art could possibly be.

Benny Andrews worked with Bearden in another group, the Black Emergency
Cultural Coalition. In Did the Bear Sit Under a Tree? (1969), a black
protester shakes his fist at the American flag, which is meant to
protect him, but is seen closed-off in its own cold space.

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Delivering Justice: W. W. Law and the Fight for Civil Rights, written by Jim Haskins, illustrated by Benny Andrews 2006 Awardee

Spencer Museum exhibitions highlight African-American story quilts

The Spencer Museum of Art recently opened two evocative exhibitions that highlight African-American quilting traditions.

To complement this exhibition, Earle curated “Narratives of the Soul,” which presents significant African-American quilts from the Spencer Museum’s collection, as well as regional and national loans. One highlight of the exhibition is the art museum’s “Flag Story Quilt” by renowned artist Faith Ringgold. Ringgold will give the keynote lecture for the Quilt Convention on Wednesday, July 12, at the Lied Center.

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Find out how to choose the right book during at A.K. Smiley Public Library presentation

On Sept. 7 an upcoming adult literacy event when author Francisco Jimenez will speak at the Contemporary Club at 6 p.m. Jimenez, is the author of “The Circuit” and “Breaking Through,” autobiographical stories about his life as a child of migrant workers and his love of education.

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The Circuit: Stories from the Life of a Migrant Child by Francisco Jiménez 1998 Awardee

Poetry Sunday: Lauren Wolk
Local NPR for the Cape, Coast & Islands

Lauren Wolk reads her poem “Shopping for Bras.”

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Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk 2017 Awardee

The Vibrant Art Of Roxbury’s Ekua Holmes Recalls The Harlem Renaissance

The exhibit mostly displays Holmes’ paintings for the children’s books she has recently illustrated, including her works on Fannie Lou Hamer, titled “Voice of Freedom” and “Out of Wonder, Poems Celebrating Poets.” The Hamer book, produced with writer Carole Boston Weatherford, garnered a children’s book trifecta: The Caldecott Honor Book, The Robert F. Sibert Honor Book and the John Steptoe New Talent Coretta Scott King Award.

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Birmingham, 1963 by Carole Boston Weatherford 2008 Awardee

Carlsbad Museum opens children’s books illustration exhibit

The exhibit, “Childhood Classics: 100 Years of Original Illustration from the Art Kandy Collection,” is open through Sept. 30 to allow for class field trips to view illustrations from children’s books.

The exhibit, which originally opened in California, features original illustrations from Dr. Seuss’ “Cat in the Hat”, Garth Williams’ “Stuart Little,” “Where the Wild Things Are” by Maurice Sendak and Floyd Cooper’s “Jump! From the Life of Michael Jordan.”

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Ruth and the Green Book by Calvin Alexander Ramsey with Gwen Strauss and illustrated by Floyd Cooper 2011 Awardee


In this week’s interview, we speak with Carmen Agra Deedy, author of The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet!, a children’s book-illustrated by Eugene Yelchin-about a rooster who insists on singing despite the mayor’s no-singing laws. Deedy discusses young readers, surveillance, and the use of humor when confronting difficult realities.

What is the responsibility of the writer of children’s books?

To respect the intelligence of young readers and never, ever, lie to them. They will love you for the former and crucify you should you ignore the latter.

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The Yellow Star: The Legend of King Christian X of Denmark by Carmen Agra Deedy 2001 Awardee

Meigs ancestor became renowned author

The fame of the Rodgers family of Perryville and Havre de Grace extends far and wide with Commodore John Rodgers being the top echelon of that pyramid of fame.

If one were to trace the lineage of Meigs and Rodgers families for a bit, one will arrive at another Meigs of note who, sadly, hasn’t reached the level of fame and recognition as her male ancestors with their impressive military careers. This ancestor was Cornelia Meigs, an author of fiction and biography, a teacher and historian of note and a critic of children’s literature. Truly she was an astounding woman who contributed greatly to children’s literature as a whole.

She would leave Bryn Mawr to teach writing at the New School of Social Research in New York and was the lead editor and a writer of “A Critical History of Children’s Literature,” published in 1953. The book was called landmark in the field of children’s literature studies. It was later revised under Meigs’ critical eye and reissued in 1969.

She would write over 30 fiction books for children, two plays, two biographies and several books and articles for adults.

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Jane Addams: Pioneer of Social Justice written by Cornelia Meigs 1971 Awardee

Books raise awareness, sensitivity to suffering

Today’s reviewed books help create a more sensitive awareness of this global problem that promotes empathy, and that’s a very good thing because if we were among the 65.6 million displaced people in the world, we’d surely want others to be empathetic toward our plight and offer us help.

“A Long Walk to Water” by Linda Sue Park

Alternating narratives of two young people living in Sudan, this book is based on the true story of the life of Salva Dut, who, at age 11, was separated from his family and village during yet again another battle in the Second Sudanese Civil War. Against all odds, Salva’s journey of many years, walking from one refugee camp to another, across Africa to Ethopia, to Kenya and back to Sudan, demonstrates enormous courage, hope and the will to survive.

The second voice in “A Long Walk to Water” is young Nya, who walks for eight hours every day simply to fetch water. How and why their lives intersect is both profound and moving.

An important work in many regards, “A Long Walk to Water” not only raises an awareness of the suffering of others, but in so doing, helps readers develop compassion, empathy and a deeper appreciation of those things many of us take for granted.

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A Long Walk to Water: Based on a True Story by Linda Sue Park 2011 Awardee

When My Name Was Keoko by Linda Sue Park 2003 Awardee

Thoreau Bicentennial Gathering: Celebrating the Life, Works, and Legacy of Henry David Thoreau

PEN New England presentation of Thoreau Prize for Nature Writing to Sy Montgomery (Sy Montgomery, a naturalist, author and scriptwriter who writes for children as well as adults)

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Temple Grandin: How the Girl Who Loved Cows Embraced Autism and Changed the World by Sy Montgomery 2013 Awardee

Western Washington University and the Whatcom County Library System chosen as site for 2018 Arbuthnot Lecture

The 2018 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture featuring Naomi Shihab Nye will be held in the spring of 2018.

Sylvia Tag, Curator of The Children’s Literature Interdisciplinary Collection, noted that, “Naomi Shihab Nye spreads hope and light through her poetry and prose. Western Washington University and the Whatcom County Library System are honored to host the Arbuthnot Honor Lecture, and invite her particular brilliance to illuminate our diverse and word-hungry communities.”

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Habibi by Naomi Shihab Nye 1998 Awardee

Sitti’s Secrets by Naomi Shihab Nye, illustrated by Nancy Carpenter 1995 Awardee

Since 1953, the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award annually acknowledges
books published in the U.S. during the previous year. Books commended by the
Award address themes of topics that engage children in thinking about peace,
justice, world community and/or equality of the sexes and all races. The books
also must meet conventional standards of literacy and artistic excellence.

A national committee chooses winners and honor books for younger and older children.

Read more about the 2017 Awards.

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