Throughout the run of the landmark exhibition Skilled Labor: Black Realism in Detroit, Cranbrook Art Museum hosts artist-led tours for small groups. These tours will be led by artists included in the exhibition and have been paired together based on connections to each other and their work. The tours will be informal discussions about the artwork and this community of Detroit artists.
Mario Moore, painter and co-curator of Skilled Labor: Black Realism in Detroit was raised by artist Sabrina Nelson in the Black arts community and learned from an early age from mentors like Richard Lewis, who taught him to paint after school.
Sabrina Nelson lives and works in Detroit, where she was born and raised. She attended the College of Creative Studies (MFA, 1991).
Nelson was born in the wake of the ’67 Rebellion in Detroit. She is a painter influenced by Yoruba religion as well as Eastern and African philosophies. Her work is a combination of spirit, motion, and intimacy. Not limited to two dimensions, the scope of her work also includes sculpture, objects, performance, and installation.
Nelson has been a professional artist for more than thirty-five years and an educator for more than thirty years. She occupies positions at both the Detroit Institute of Arts as a studio art teacher and at her alma mater the College of Creative Studies. Additionally, Nelson has lectured on the preservation of Black feminism in art at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History and has been a guest curator at both the Carr Center and the Music Hall Performing Arts Center. Her work has been exhibited at the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, and the African American Art in Culture Complex in San Francisco, as well as in Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, New York, and Ohio.
Richard Lewis lives and works in Detroit, where he was born and raised. After graduating from Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Lewis attended the College for Creative Studies (BFA, Fine Arts, 1991) and the Yale University School of Art (MFA, Painting and Print Media, 1993).
Lewis started drawing when he was four, and by the age of ten, his godmother told him to study his family members before going into the next room and drawing. That experience started his keen observation of faces and features.
Lewis came back to Detroit after his studies, teaching African American art history and driving a cab. He moved to New York City in 1995 to be an artist-in-residence at The Studio Museum in Harlem before completing another residency at Henry Street Settlement and working for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In 2002, Lewis moved back to Detroit, where he continues to work to this day. He was a recipient of a Kresge Foundation Fellowship in 2011.
Mario Moore lives and works in Detroit, where he was born and raised. He attended the College for Creative Studies (BFA, Illustration, 2009) and the Yale University School of Art (MFA, Painting, 2013).
Mario Moore’s exquisitely rendered realist paintings focus on the personal, social and political implications of our segregated society. Presenting stories of his own life and those of friends and family, Moore weaves together multiple references to history, art, politics, and literature to complete his narrative.
Moore has been awarded the prestigious Princeton Hodder Fellowship at Princeton University and has participated as an artist-in-residence at Knox College, Duke University, Fountainhead Residency, and the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation. He has been featured in The New York Times among other publications. In 2021, he had his first museum survey exhibition, Enshrined: Presence + Preservation, at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit and is a recipient of a Kresge Visual Artist Fellowship in 2023. Moore’s work is in several public and private collections, including the Detroit Institute of Arts, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Princeton University Art Museum, and Cranbrook Art Museum.
Free and open to the public, space is limited, and advanced registration encouraged. The ability to stand and/or walk for one hour is required for this event.
Tagged: Artist Talk, Cranbrook, lecture, Lecture Series
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