V

Narratives of African American Art and Identity

Ray Saunders

Untitled, n.d.

Pencil on paper

6" x 9"


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Untitled

California artist Ray Saunders has traveled to many parts of Europe, Africa, and Asia and has studios in Oakland, Paris, and Venice. Like his travels, his work is an eclectic assemblage of styles, techniques, and references. Personal references and, through those, references to African American history often predominate. Saunders gave Untitled to David Driskell as a gift; in its improvisational, sketch-like style and in the inclusion of text, it is similar to many of his larger multimedia works. In Untitled,a black girl who is effectively "erased" except for her detailed dress stands to the side of two seated, reading women. The pencil sketch suggests the importance of church and churchgoing to African American communities. The caption, "Sundays when you're a Black kid, is about get'n dressed-up and get'n dirty not meaning to 'cause you're not supposed to," also humorously refers to the restraints imposed on children who impatiently await Sunday's end.   J. S.

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