Untitled: Four Etchings

Glenn Ligon American
Printer Burnet Editions American
Publisher Max Protetch American

Not on view

Taking advantage of the textures achievable with etching and aquatint techniques, Ligon here creates two black-on-white and two black-on-black prints whose dense layers and deliberate smudges visualize themes of legibility and illegibility, prominence and erasure, and blackness and whiteness. The words, which are either highlighted or obscured, quote works by two renowned African American writers: Zora Neale Hurston’s 1928 essay "How it Feels to Be Colored Me" and Ralph Ellison’s 1952 novel Invisible Man. In the viewer’s efforts to read the texts, Ligon signals the struggles of African Americans to claim agency and voice in white America.

Untitled: Four Etchings, Glenn Ligon (American, born New York, New York, 1960), Four intaglio prints

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