Representation

noun. / ˌreprəˌzenˈtāSH(ə)n /

1). Representational art depicts things in the real world, like trees or the human figure. Representation and abstraction are opposite ends of a spectrum. Representational art can be abstract but the more abstract it is, the less recognizable it is.

Example: “Loïs Mailou Jones used African mask imagery in her work. She a representational artist.”

2). Artists choose how they want to be “represented” in the art world. Some artists partner with galleries and art dealers to sell art and find new opportunities. Other artists represent themselves.

Example: “Titus Kaphar was representing himself. Now he has gallery representation.”

3). Representation means a diversity of voices. Who is represented in art and how? Who is represented in art collections and who is not? Who is represented in leadership positions in the art world and who is not?

Example: “Kehinde Wiley challenges how the Black figure is represented in the canon of art history.”


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