Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Block

The Block, 1971
Romare Bearden (American, 1911-1988)
Cut and pasted printed, colored and metallic papers, photostats, pencil, ink marker, gouache, watercolor, and pen and ink on Masonite; overall: 48 x 216 in.
Image: metmuseum.org six panels, each: 48 x 36 in.

A variety of collage materials including cut paper, newspaper, fabric are mixed with printing techniques and drawing. By incorporating images from current magazines and newspapers a direct element of reality is included in the overall composition. The image here is rather small, either click on the title for zooming capabilities or look even more closely here or check out individual panels on the Met's timeline .

This work is the subject of a fantastic example of an online multimedia presentation. Romare Bearden: Let's Walk the Block is dedicated to the exploration of this wonderful work from biography to curator descriptions of the work to accompanying jazz music (one of Bearden's inspirations and represented in much of his work). The Block is a tribute to Harlem, each panel representing an aspect of the neighborhood in NYC.

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