Written By: Sylvie Coffey – Public Relations Intern

February is Black History month when the U.S. honors the sacrifices and contributions of African Americans that have helped shape our present nation. Black culture has, still and will always majorly influence our society through art, fashion, music, science, politics, law, sports, and more. Beyond February we truly need to be celebrating and recognizing this culture year-round. We are not as far removed as we think from this country’s horrific past, and we must continue to make positive strides to becoming a fully free and equal society.

Here at DOMA we have recently acquired works of art by African American artists including Joseph Delaney, June Edmonds, John Wesley Hardrick, Sedrick Huckaby, and Richard Hunt. These join works by Jacob Lawrence, Martin Puryear, Lorna Simpson, Renee Stout, Kara Walker, Charles White, and Joseph E. Yoakum, among others.

Joseph Delaney (Knoxville, TN, 1904 – 1991, Knoxville, TN) spent years in New York, moving there in 1930 and studying at the Art Students League. where his teachers and colleagues included Thomas Hart Benton and Jackson Pollock. New York and its cityscapes and people became Delaney’s muse, and we see that through his work. Currently on display at DOMA, his piece Domino Sugar is just one example of his work from this period.

(Joseph Delaney, 1904 ­-1991, Domino Sugar, about 1953, Oil on paper adhered to canvas mounted on Masonite board, Gift of Charles and Kathleen Harper, 2010.021.002, © Estate of Joseph Delaney, Mark K. Williams, Administrator C.T.A.)

June Edmonds (Los Angeles, CA, 1959 – ), attended San Diego State University where she earned her BFA and her MFA at the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, Edmonds utilizes abstract painting methods to pay respect to African American figures, historical events, and to connect with her own roots. She has a concentration of flag paintings, and DOMA has acquired one titled Convictions I. These flag paintings take the United States flag as we know it to be, and by utilizing a variety of colors to represent diverse skin tones, she has created space for the inclusion of different identities within her paintings.

(June Edmonds, Born 1959, Convictions I, 2019, Acrylic on canvas 36 x 24 in., Purchase: Margaret Ball Petty Fund and the Sharon Seager Women’s Art Fund, 2020.003.000, ©June Edmonds. Courtesy the artist and Luis de Jesus, Los Angeles)

Come to DOMA to see both of the lovely paintings featured in this blog and to check out the works by other African American artists! We are open Tuesday-Friday 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and on Saturday from 1:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m., and per university policy masks are required for entry. As always thank you for reading the DOMA Insider and stay warm!