Amy Sherald

American, b. 1973

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Amy Sherald

American, b. 1973

2,451
Followers
Biography

Through her monumental portraits of African American subjects, Amy Sherald explores alternate narratives of blackness through the exclusion of color from the notion of race. The Baltimore-based artist is best known for her stylized, figurative paintings of vibrantly dressed individuals rendered in grayscale skin tones against flat, highly-saturated backgrounds that evoke a sense of timeless identity. “I’m painting the paintings that I want to see in museums,” she said. “And I’m hopefully presenting them in a way that’s universal enough that they become representative of something different than just a black body on a canvas.” Sherald was the first woman to win the Smithsonian’s Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition grand prize with her 2016 entry Miss Everything (Unsuppressed Deliverance). Former First Lady Michelle Obama tapped Sherald to paint her official portrait for the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C., which was unveiled in early 2018 alongside Kehinde Wiley’s likeness of President Barack Obama.

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Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Blue chip status
Blue chip representation
Represented by internationally reputable galleries.
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Studio Museum in Harlem
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
Artforum
Biography

Through her monumental portraits of African American subjects, Amy Sherald explores alternate narratives of blackness through the exclusion of color from the notion of race. The Baltimore-based artist is best known for her stylized, figurative paintings of vibrantly dressed individuals rendered in grayscale skin tones against flat, highly-saturated backgrounds that evoke a sense of timeless identity. “I’m painting the paintings that I want to see in museums,” she said. “And I’m hopefully presenting them in a way that’s universal enough that they become representative of something different than just a black body on a canvas.” Sherald was the first woman to win the Smithsonian’s Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition grand prize with her 2016 entry Miss Everything (Unsuppressed Deliverance). Former First Lady Michelle Obama tapped Sherald to paint her official portrait for the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C., which was unveiled in early 2018 alongside Kehinde Wiley’s likeness of President Barack Obama.

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Blue chip status
Blue chip representation
Represented by internationally reputable galleries.
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Studio Museum in Harlem
Publication
Reviewed by a major art publication
Artforum
Articles Featuring Amy Sherald
8 Collectors and Curators Share the Art on Their Holiday Wish Lists
Nov 26th, 2019
What the Obama Portraits Tell Us about Art and Politics
Mar 1st, 2018
Obama Portraitist Amy Sherald Gives Advice to Young Artists
Feb 27th, 2018
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