Fridman Gallery is honored to present Dindga McCannon’s first major solo exhibition in her five-decade career. In Plain Sight brings together a range of works spanning the 1980s to today and highlights her multidisciplinary practice featuring mixed media quilts, paintings, and sculpture.
Born in New York City and raised in Harlem and the Bronx, Dindga came of age as an artist and young mother during the rise of feminist art in New York City and the civil rights movement across the nation. Dindga began her career studying under Harlem Renaissance artists such as Jacob Lawrence, Charles Alston, Richard Mayhew, and Al Loving at the Art Students League of New York and the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop. She went on to become a pillar of the influential African-American art collective Weusi, and later, a co-founder of Where We At Black Women Artists, a noteworthy collective affiliated with the Black Arts Movement. Throughout Dindga’s career, she created space for her own artistic exploration while building a support network for generations of Black artists.
McCannon’s use of oil painting, printmaking, and sewing made her an early influencer of textile assemblage, found-object quilting, and wearable art, all of which expand upon the legacy of African and African-American culture and historical memory, and are artforms that have gained new energy across today’s arts and cultural landscape. McCannon’s implementation of non-traditional materials, including personal objects, photographs, and ephemera draw the viewer into her world as she imbues her canvases and tapestries with the sounds, feelings, and vibrancy of her community and ancestors. Her works often focus on the history and stories of women — iconic public figures, unknown heroines, family, and friends who shape her vibrant universe.
On the occasion of the exhibition, Fridman Gallery will publish a catalogue, the first publication dedicated exclusively to her practice, featuring essays by Tammi Lawson, Curator of the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and by Niama Safia Sandy, New York–based cultural anthropologist, curator, producer, multidisciplinary artist, and the gallery’s inaugural Curator-and-Writer-in-
Fridman Gallery is also honored to exhibit Dindga’s work alongside new artwork by Ambrose for its presentation at the upcoming Armory Show, September 9 – 12. The gallery’s booth will feature an intergenerational dialogue between the two pioneering artists who share a common multidisciplinary embrace of painting and textile practices. Later in the year, Fridman Gallery will present a focused look at a selection of Dindga’s work from the 20th century as part of the Survey sector of Art Basel Miami Beach, November 30 – December 4.
McCannon’s work is in the public collections of the Brooklyn Museum, the Studio Museum in Harlem, and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and Michigan State University, among others. Her work has been included in recent exhibitions, including We Wanted A Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965-1985 organized by the Brooklyn Museum; and Black Power at the National Civil Rights Museum, Memphis, Tennessee.
Dinga McCannon: In Plain Sight will be on view from September 8 to October 17, 2021 at Fridman Gallery, 169 Bowery, NYC. Opening Reception on Wednesday, September 8th from 6-9pm.