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MICKALENE THOMAS, RAQUEL COME TO ME, 2019

MICKALENE THOMAS, RAQUEL COME TO ME, 2019

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MICKALENE THOMAS
Racquel Come to Me, 2019
Edition of 10 + 1 AP
Numbered
Accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity
Hand knotted, Tibetan weave
230 x 300 cm (90.5 x 118 ins)
Wool, Lyocell, Linen & Silk
High & Low Cut
Custom size upon request

Titled Racquel Come to Me, the rug is adapted from a unique photo drawing collage created for specifically this project. The shape is irregular and free-form and combines visual elements that create a landscape of references from art history, popular culture and politics. Various levels of pile heights, carving and cutting techniques have been utilized to create an exquisite work of art. Each hand-made piece in the edition run is inherently unique due to the artisan practices used in the design’s 6-month making. The nature of the media at hand, a hand knotted rug, is a natural complement to components utilized in Thomas’ immersive installations that utilize textiles, wallpaper, furniture and decor objects to reconstruct the 1970s domestic aesthetic that was formative to her visual narrative. Thomas’ work stems from her long study of art history and classical genres of portraiture, landscape, and still life. Inspired by various sources that range from the 19th century Hudson river school to Édouard Manet, Alice Neel, and Romare Bearden, she has created a true signature style and continues to explore notions of beauty from a contemporary perspective infused with the more recent influences of popular culture and pop art, redefining contemporary ideas of portraiture. In combining traditional genres with African American female subjects, Thomas makes a case for opening up the conventional parameters of art history and culture. Thomas’s layered process of fragmentation, in which she begins with a photographic portrait and moves to collage and then on to painting, is the result of discreet borrowings from our twenty-first century language of mass culture. Strategically placed objects in her photographs come into sharper relief during the collage stage as deliberately exposed tape and abrupt lines between forms frame our perspective, focusing us on the distinct cultural languages that she puts on view. 

Thomas’s work can be found in many significant public and private collections, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Rubell Collection in Miami, Florida, and the American Art Museum, Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. 

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