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LAVC Calendar of Events

"Black Comix: The Politics and Pleasures of Black Representation" Art Exhibition

Date: 2/22/2018, 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM

Location: Art (ART) Gallery

"Black Comix: The Politics and Pleasures of Black Representation" Art Exhibition

The LAVC Art Gallery proudly presents a new exhibition titled "Black Comix: The Politics and Pleasures of Black Representation" from February 5-March 8 in the LAVC Art Gallery in the Art Building.

This exhibition is co-curated by John Jennings, professor of Media and Cultural Studies, UC Riverside, and Dr. Adilifu Nama, professor of African American Studies, Loyola Marymount University. 

"Black Comix: The Politics and Pleasures of Black Representation" 
Exhibition runs from February 5 - March 8, 2018

The organized struggle for racial justice in America is a political cornerstone for gauging the American condition. But alongside traditional sites of racial resistance is the increasing centrality of racial representation in American popular culture across various entertainment mediums. Accordingly, comic and graphic art are important sites of ideological, social and cultural struggle concerning race. "Black Comix" specifically demonstrates and draws on a multiplicity of styles but, most impressively, brings these creative formations together in a manner that uniquely explores cultural suppositions regarding black racial representation and a range of engaging debates concerning the black aesthetic articulated in mainstream American pop culture and politics.

The scope, depth and artistic dexterity presented across "Black Comix" are a small sample of the array of images, narratives and ideas in the field. These images are informed by a multifaceted articulation of racial representation around and within an ever-broadening matrix of shifting creative dynamics concerning AstroBlackness, Afrofuturism, black racial fantasy and counter-hegemonic formations of diasporic iterations of “blackness” in American society.

This exhibition seeks to explore these political aspects around cultural production. However, it is also intended to celebrate the breadth and depth of visual expressions by African Americans in the extremely powerful medium of independent comics.

About the curators:
John Jennings is a Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at the University of California at Riverside. His work centers around intersectional narratives regarding identity politics and popular media. Jennings is co-editor of the Eisner Award winning collection The Blacker the Ink: Constructions of Black Identity in Comics and Sequential Art and co-founder/organizer of The Schomburg Center's Black Comic Book Festival in Harlem. He is co-founder and organizer of the MLK NorCal's Black Comix Arts Festival in San Francisco and also SOL-CON: The Brown and Black Comix Expo at the Ohio State University. Jennings is a 2016 Nasir Jones Hip Hop Studies Fellow with the Hutchins Center at Harvard University. Jennings' current projects include the art collection Black Kirby: In Search of the Motherboxx Connection, the horror anthology Box of Bones, the coffee table book (with Damian Duffy) Black Comix Returns, the supernatural crime noir story Blue Hand Mojo, and the New York Times best-selling graphic novel adaptation of Octavia Butler's classic dark fantasy novel Kindred.

Dr. Adilifu Nama is a Professor of African American Studies at Loyola Marymount University. His work explores how popular culture via film, comics, Afrofuturism and music are provocative sites for examining the cultural politics of race in America. He is the author of Race on the QT: Blackness and the Films of Quentin Tarantino (University Texas Press, 2015), the American Book Award winning Super Black: American Pop Culture and Black Superheroes (University Texas Press, 2011), and Black Space: Imagining Race in Science Fiction Film (University Texas Press, 2008), the first book length analysis of black racial representation in Science Fiction Film. Dr. Nama is also the coorganizer of several colloquia concerning race, comics and science fiction, including AstroBlackness 2: The Surreal, The Speculative and The Spooky; Astro-Blackness: Remaking and (Re) Mixing Black Identity Before, Now and Beyond; and OUTSIDE THE LINES: Reconfiguring Race in American Comics, Animation and Graphic Novels.

Admission is free and the exhibition is open to the public. The exhibition is located in the LAVC Art Gallery, and is open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursday from 11 a.m.-2 p.m., and by appointment. The Art Gallery is closed on holidays and when the campus is closed. View campus map.

For more information, visit the LAVC Art Gallery Web page.

This event is wheelchair accessible. Individuals needing sign language interpreters, assisted listening devices, large print, Braille materials, or any other accommodations, should contact the LAVC Art Gallery at (818) 947-2646 at least 5 business days in advance.

Ticket Cost: Free

Parking: Guest should park in Parking Lot D. Parking permits are required at all times. Daily Parking permits for student parking spots can be purchased at an LAVC parking pay station. View campus map

For more information please contact: LAVC Art Gallery

Phone: (818) 778-5536


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