Every year, we celebrate Black History Month in February. Many people use this time to remind us of the history that Black people went through. For us, we want to take this time to look at how Black people have contributed to the art world and how they've changed art in ways some of us might not have considered before.
So why February? In 1926, the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (now known as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History) sponsored a national Negro History week. The week they chose was the second week of February, as it is the birthday of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, two major figures in the abolishment of slavery in the United States. Slowly and surely, the week dedicated to African American history grew to a month, with President Gerald Ford officially acknowledging it in 1976. Though it began as an American celebration, other nations worldwide began adopting the practice. The United States and Canada celebrate Black History Month in February, while the United Kingdom and Ireland celebrate in October.
So what's in store for us this month? We're going to be publishing daily articles about great Black artists in the past and present. We will look at how these artists contribute to the art world and even how they became pioneers. We will also look at how current Black artists built upon the legacy their predecessors have left behind and how we can look to the bright exciting future. While we will largely be focusing on Black American history, we will also look at some of the phenomenal artists in the international Black art community.
Keep an eye on this space and our social media as we explore the rich history of Black art.