Mickalene Thomas, ‘Do I Look Like a Lady? (Comedians and Singers) (video still),’, 2016, MOCA, Los Angeles

Image rights: Courtesy of the artist, Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong, and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

"Mickalene Thomas: Do I Look Like a Lady?"

Venue: MOCA, Los Angeles, Los Angeles (2016-2017)

About Mickalene Thomas

In her texturally rich paintings, Mickalene Thomas examines the popular characterization of black female identity, celebrity, and sexuality. Crafted with acrylic, rhinestones, and enamel, the vibrant interwoven patterns adorning Thomas’ work are inspired by her childhood in the 1970s. Thomas chooses to depict powerful women such as her mother, celebrities, and iconic art-historical figures. In a 2010 photograph entitled Le déjeuner sur l’herbe: Le Trois Femme Noires (2010), Thomas re-stages Édouard Manet’s famous image, substituting his painted figures for provocatively dressed black women. Such works demonstrate Thomas’s sustained interest in visualizing the black woman’s relationship both to art history and to contemporary culture at large.

American, b. 1971, Camden, New Jersey, based in New York, New York