Fisher, Jean (2005) Dialogues. In: Shades of Black: Assembling Black Arts in 1980s Britain. Bailey, David A., Baucom, Ian and Boyce, Sonia, eds. Duke University Press, pp. 167-196. ISBN 0822334208. [Book Section]


‘Dialogues' is Part Two of a four-part book assessing the achievements of the British black and Asian diasporic artists and filmmakers who emerged in the early 1980s, known as the ‘Black Arts Movement'. The invitation to write ‘Dialogues' was a result of Fisher's research into art practice, intercultural studies and postcolonial theory, and her published essays on British black artists, including Steve McQueen, 2002 [ISBN 1902201159] and Yinka Shonibare, 2002 [ISBN9652783013]. ‘Dialogues' was a critical overview of the historical significance, aesthetic positions and trajectories of the Black Arts Movement drawn against a background of the problematic relationship between ethnically ‘marginalised' artists and multiculturalism as interpreted by mainstream cultural and political institutions.

The background research involved analysis of conference papers, a survey of the diverse theoretical positions detailed during the period, and the art historical, educational and dissemination issues raised through interviews with participants. The significance of ‘Dialogues' was in highlighting the critical, political and historical criteria for assessing black diasporic art work in a way that would establish a ground for future art historians. ‘Dialogues' was a contribution to the debate on how the Black Arts Movement had produced a radically new, politically inflected aesthetic that, while it spoke from a diasporic position of cultural displacement, spoke to the widely experienced, alienating conditions of contemporary life.

‘Dialogues' led to further commissions: the appointment as NESTA mentor to the artist Sonia Boyce, 2005-06; a book chapter in The Ghosts of Songs: The Film Art of Black Audio Film Collective, Liverpool University and Chicago University Press, 2007 [ISBN 9781846310140]; and a chapter in For You Only You: A Project by Sonia Boyce, Ruskin School, Oxford University, 2007 [ISBN 9780953852581].

Shades of Black was awarded the Historians of British Art Book Prize for edited volumes, 2007.

Portfolio available.

Item Type: Book Section
Research Areas: A. > School of Art and Design > Visual Arts
Item ID: 434
Depositing User: Repository team
Date Deposited: 12 Nov 2008 16:46
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2017 12:19
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/434

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