Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects is pleased to present a solo exhibition of work by Fort Worth, Texas-based artist Sedrick Huckaby. This is Huckaby’s first solo gallery show in New York City. The exhibition includes paintings, sculptures, and prints. Included are lithographs and preparatory drawings from the artist’s 99% Project, as well as related portrait paintings and mixed media “family” pieces, which Huckaby refers to as paint sculpture made of oil paint and celluclay.
Huckaby began The 99% Project in 2012, and worked on it for about two years making drawings of people from his African-American neighborhood: family, friends, regulars at the bar, convenience store, and barbershop in his area. Huckaby used the drawings to make 101 lithographs as a guest at the Brandywine Workshop in Philadelphia. The 99% is a topic that feels even more relevant today.
Huckaby’s goal, in the drawings, prints, and paintings, was to represent the voice of a community not traditionally imaged in portraiture. He considered the totality of his project to be like a quilt, so that these individual voices were heard as one unified community. Family quilts have, additionally, been an important motif for Huckaby. While drawing his friends and acquaintances, Huckaby transcribed sentences and phrases from their conversations into handwritten notes on the sheets. Huckaby looks at the individual as a way of talking about the community.
Also included in the exhibition are works from Huckaby’s “Family” series, which grew out of his belief that the “Three Forbidden F words: Faith, Family and Fathers” were untapped subjects in contemporary art. In public talks with this title, Huckaby discusses how several elements in his work relate to his own faith, and illustrate ideas about communion with God. In one “Family” piece, Huckaby shows the mother and children in a painted, planar space, while the father is represented in a three-dimensional paint sculpture. The cage represents the various types of bondages a father might experience. One that has particularly plagued the African-American father is incarceration. The picture beckons the viewer to contemplate the effects of incarceration on the entire family.
Huckaby is most often associated with a thick, impasto application of paint, although this exhibition makes clear that he uses a range of painterly and drawing approaches to express diverse concerns and personalities. Huckaby’s lush, intense painterly hand and focus on the social function of portraiture connects him to artists as diverse as Lucien Freud and Alice Neel. His work can be connected to other figurative painters who are imaging and documenting their own African-American communities, such as Kerry James Marshall, Henry Taylor and Beverly McIver.
Born in 1975 in Fort Worth, Texas Huckaby received a B.F.A. from Boston University and an M.F.A. from Yale University. Winner of numerous awards including a Joan Mitchell Foundation Award and a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, his work can be found in permanent collections such as the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; and the San Francisco MoMA. Huckaby was the subject of solo exhibitions at Hammonds House Museum in Atlanta, GA; Galveston Arts Center, Galveston, TX; Masur Museum of Art in Monroe, LA; the Danforth Museum of Art in Framingham, MA; Valley House Gallery, Dallas, Texas, and more. Work from The 99% Project were previously exhibited at The Houston Arts League in 2013, The List Gallery of Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA, in 2013, and the Amon Carter Museum of Art, Fort Worth, Texas, in 2016. This is Huckaby’s first exhibition at Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects.
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