The Mickalene Thomas: Mentors, Muses, and Celebrities was quite the experience. The exhibit show powerful black female imaging that embraces sexuality, intellect, and the past no matter how difficult it was. It does this all through digital media. When you walk into the Spelman Exhibit your sense are overloaded. There are video projects and audio playing in an open space. It is almost too much to handle but it forces you to pay careful attention to each exhibit. The fact that she uses the video/audio adds a different experience to it. I asked myself would the message be as powerful or clear if they were just pictures. Not really. The display when you first walk in had images of black female icons from 20th century and I was shocked that I had a strong reaction to it. There were my black female heroins on that screen: Whitney Houston, Whoopi Goldberg, and many more. In a corner display there was an old projector showing black women in 19th century clothing. They were like moving slave portraits, the women were stoic yet strong. There were images of naked women that made you uncomfortable but only because it made you realize the harshness history of black sexual assault. The exhibit was striking and complex. It is a form of media that you cannot just look on the internet to get the experience but you have to see in person.
Here is some info on the exhibit but go see it!