The Weusi Artist Collective: Black Joy and Resilience


Deborah Singletary, Dindga McCannon, Ed Sherman, Jesse A. Henry, Jimmy James Greene,

Ken Wright, MLJ Johnson, Otto Neals, Robert Daniels, Stanwyck Cromwell, and Taiwo Duvall.

The Weusi Artist Collective is a collaboration of African and African Diaspora artists who have been trailblazers in the world of contemporary art. The group’s name, “Weusi,” translates to blackness in the language, Swahili, and was established in 1965 in New York City during a period in which many Black artists in New York started rejecting traditional modes of what was deemed as “art” (i.e. art created and celebrated by white men) to create works that explored Black culture and history. The Civil Rights Movement (1954 – 1968) played a pivotal role in the spirit of embracing Black identity, thus, inspiring a group of Black artists to unite and bring Black art to Black people. Today, the group stands as a historical and important piece of community engagement and Black Art History for the New York City community. Each member in this exhibition have had their names listed throughout popular directories for artists and work featured throughout several popular publications. Additionally, the artists’ artwork have been displayed as murals in New York City parks and in subway stations, as well as within the private collections of powerful figureheads within the Black history.


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