Dialects: Diverse Bookworks by Black and Hispanic Artists (1980)

Dialects: Diverse Bookworks by Black and Hispanic Artists (1980) explored the politics of race, gender, and identity through bookmaking practices. This exhibition brought together artists of color working outside of book art to create new experimental works. While these book works vary in style, they reflect the artists’ primary mediums—performance, sculpture, photography, music, and collage. The artists used a range of materials to create printed, handmade, painted, audio, handwritten, silk-screened, photo-folio, hole-punched, and sculptural books. Many of these artists’ books visually and textually speak to the politics of resistance and subversion, especially during the 1980s when artists of color had limited opportunities in the art world. This exhibition also included an evening of John Dowell’s visual music—abstract works inspired by jazz and avant-garde compositions. Dialects: Diverse Bookworks by Black and Hispanic Artists was curated by Horace Brockington.

HORACE BROCKINGTON is a curator, gallery director, and consultant. He has organized exhibitions at Just Above Midtown, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Whitney Museum of American Art, Sculpture Center, and Franklin Furnace, among other venues. Brockington co-founded with Gylbert Coker and David Hammons Art Across the Park—a public art project that was instrumental in creating new site-specific artworks in parks throughout New York City. He is Founding Director of ICContemporary: Institute for Collaborations in Visual Culture, NYC, which commissions and produces projects by contemporary artists working across various forms of media. Brockington’s writings on modern and contemporary art have appeared in magazines, journals, and anthologies. He currently serves as the editor of Triannum: Journal of Visual Culture and is a member of the planning committee for The Friends of Education at the Museum of Modern Art. Brockington has taught at Brown University, Kean University, and City University of New York, where he is conducting research on sculpture for a book-length project. Brockington holds degrees in Art History from Columbia University and Brown University.