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Exhibition Spotlight: Prints and Posters in We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965–85

May 15, 2018

Installation view of prints and posters in We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965–85 (Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York, February 17–May 27, 2018). Photo by MK Photo.

As an efficient and inexpensive method for widely disseminating information, printmaking has long been associated with protest and freedom of expression. Many artists in the 1960s explored printmaking as a primary means for making art, prioritizing utility and accessibility over preciousness or market value. Their posters, prints, announcements, and other forms of printed ephemera were relatively easy to produce in bulk and distribute, allowing artists to circumvent and undermine an increasingly commercialized art world.

For artists of the Black Arts Movement, screenprints and posters became primary mediums for creative experimentation and sharing political ideas. Displaying a diverse aesthetic vocabulary, this wall of prints and posters samples the history of activist printmaking in this period—a rich and complex collection of creative voices.