L’Artiste Noir highlights famous artists

As a part of the Black Student Union’s (BSU) celebration of Black History Month, the organization showcased reproductions of artwork from famous black artists in L’Artiste Noir.

Sharna Scott, BSU Webmaster, said the event is “part of arts and entertainment week for BSU.”

The pieces used were chosen and then researched by members of BSU. The event focused on artists from different time periods and different styles, Scott said.

The reproductions included photographs, images of sculptures and paintings.

The artists whose work was on display included James John Audobon, who was the namesake of the Audubon Society.

Audubon was an ornithologist and naturalist who painted, catalogued and described the birds of North America.

His 435-print collection, “Birds of America,” is the standard for bird artists.

He was born in Haiti, the illegitimate son of a French sea captain/slavemaster and a woman who may have been a slave.

Another artist whose work was featured was Jean-Michel Basquiat, a Neo-expressionist artist born in Brooklyn, N.Y.

He started as a graffiti artist, but his later Neo-expressionist works made him a leading figure in contemporary art.

Basquiat also collaborated with Andy Warhol and painted together, influencing each other’s works.

BSU’s exhibit also showcased reproductions from Gordon Parks, a photographer who was well-known for his photography essays in Life magazine.

Parks was the first African-American to work at Life and the first to write, direct and score a Hollywood film. He was the director of the 1971 movie “Shaft.”

Other works included reproductions of pieces by Selma Burke, Ernie Barnes, Elizabeth Catlett and Aaron Douglass.