Continue playing

(Time remaining: )

Play from beginning

Play from beginning

Continue playing "{{ controller.videos[controller.getVideo(controller.currentVideo)].segmentParentTitle}}"

{{controller.videos[controller.getVideo(controller.currentVideo)].title}} has ended.

{{ currentTime | date:'mm:ss':'+0000' }} / {{ totalTime | date:'mm:ss':'+0000' }} {{cue.title}}
Add to WatchlistRemove from Watchlist
Add to watchlist
Remove from watchlist

Video unavailable

Kara Walker in "Stories"

“The illusion is that most of my work is simply about past events, a point in history and nothing else,” says Kara Walker about her subversive use of the traditional silhouette technique. The segment traces the evolution of Walker’s work, from time spent in the studio to the artist’s recent installations of projected light.

“A lot of what I was wanting to do in my work and what I have been doing has been about the unexpected…that unexpected situation of wanting to be the heroine and yet wanting to kill the heroine at the same time.” Projecting fiction into fact, Walker’s art upsets the conventions of history and storytelling.

More information

Closed captionsAvailable in English, German, Romanian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Italian

Translate this video

Through the Art21 Translation Project, multilingual audiences from around the globe can contribute translations, making Art21 films more accessible worldwide.


Interested in showing this film in an exhibition or public screening? To license this video please visit Licensing & Reproduction.

Kara Walker

Kara Walker explores the raw intersection of race, gender, and sexuality in her work, crafting vivid psychological narratives from a contemporary perspective on historical conditions. Over the past two decades, Walker has unleashed the traditionally Victorian medium of the silhouette onto the walls of the gallery, creating immersive installations that envelop the viewer. Walker’s multi-media work—which includes drawing, watercolor, video, and sculpture—often reconsider grotesque caricatures, probing their persistence in popular culture and reclaiming their subjugating power to alternative ends.

“The illusion is that most of my work is simply about past events, a point in history and nothing else.”

Kara Walker

History Reimagined

Add to watchlist

Eleanor Antin

Add to watchlist

Kerry James Marshall

Add to watchlist

Read 1


Projecting Fictions: “Insurrection! Our Tools Were Rudimentary, Yet We Pressed On”

Kara Walker discusses her 2002 exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum, Insurrection! (Our Tools Were Rudimentary, Yet We Pressed On).

More from "Stories"

Add to watchlist
Add to watchlist
Add to watchlist