Artist of the moment….Glenn Ligon

Glenn Ligon is a brilliant artist that uses many mediums alongside text to share cultural themes and explore themes including racism and cultural identity. Ligon was born in the Bronx, New York in the year 1960. For his collegiate education Ligon attended Wesleyan University in Middleton, Connecticut. He himself has quite a unique vantage point being a gay african- american artist. His mediums include neon, paintings, prints, drawings, and mixed media works.

He often uses past events for current works. One series was focused on signs from a sanitation strike that took place in Memphis in 1968.

Another well received series included the Ligon using posters to describe himself as if he were a runaway slave.

Used the erotic photographs of african american males of Robert Mapplethorpe and included ex Congressman Dick Armey’s words about the works below.

Started working with neon in 2005.

Included in many prominent collections including the Museum of Contemporary Art of Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, and the Nationally Gallery of Art in Washington D.C.

President Obama chose a work by the artist to hang in the White House. The name of this work is Black Like Me.

During a charity auction to raise money for Haiti a record was set for the artist with Jennifer Aniston paying $450,000 for a work titled Stranger #44.

Currently based out of New York City.

In this clip Ligon talks about working with neon and a show dealing with the current culture of America. He also talks about where he finds text such as from the author James Baldwin, who went to live in a remote village in Switzerland and was the lone person of color.

In this clip we reunite with our dear friend James Kalm as he takes us through a show featuring neon works from Ligon.

Hats off to all artists working with text!

D

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