White: Whiteness And Race In Contemporary Art
Edited by Maurice Berger Essays by Maurice Berger, David Roediger and Patricia Williams.
Over the past 20 years, the cultural and scholarly discourse around race has exploded to include the study of whiteness and white privilege, representing a radical shift in the way we think and talk about race in the United States. Since the advent of the modern civil rights movement, people of color have usually been responsible for leading the debate and discussion about race and racism, forced to evaluate the status of their race in relation to the prejudice they experience every day--while most white people, even the most liberal, are usually oblivious to the psychological and political weight of their own color. The study of whiteness asks all Americans--and especially white people--to take stock of the political, psychological, economic and cultural implication of white skin, white entitlement and white privilege. White: Whiteness and Race in Contemporary Art, the first exhibition and book devoted to the subject, gives voice to 11 artists who explicitly address the issue of whiteness: Max Becher and Andrea Robbin, Nayland Blake, Nancy Burson, Wendy Ewald and Mike Kelley, William Kentridge, Barbara Kruger, Nikki S. Lee, Cindy Sherman and Gary Simmons. David R. Roediger, Professor of History and American Studies at the University of Minnesota, contributes an essay on whiteness in the culture at large, and Patricia J. Williams, Professor of Law at Columbia University, writes about the social and legal implications of whiteness. Curator Maurice Berger, author of White Lies: Race and the Myths of Whiteness, provides an introductory text on whiteness and art as well as individual artist essays.