Lorraine O'Grady Presents "Art Is..." at Studio Museum in Harlem

Jul 16 2015 - Oct 25 2015


Studio Museum in Harlem
144 West 125th Street
New York, NY




Visual Arts

In her landmark performance Art Is…, O’Grady entered her own float in the September 1983 African-American Day Parade, riding up Harlem’s Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard (Seventh Avenue) with fifteen collaborators dressed in white. Displayed on top of the float was an enormous, ornate gilded frame, while the words “Art Is…” were emblazoned on the float’s decorative skirt. At various points along the route, O’Grady and her collaborators jumped off the float and held up empty, gilded picture frames, inviting people to pose in them. The joyful responses turned parade onlookers into participants, affirmed the readiness of Harlem’s residents to see themselves as works of art, and created an irreplaceable record of the people and places of Harlem some thirty years ago.

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