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Black ArtistsYinka Shonibare MBE (RA)

February 3, 2012

As Yinka Shonibare MBE installs his 2008 solo show at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney, Australia, he discusses his experience as a black artist living and working in the United Kingdom.

With few black artist role models from the previous generation to follow in the path of, Shonibare describes his motivation and strategy for getting his work into the art system.

More information and credits

Credits

Producer: Wesley Miller & Nick Ravich. Interview: Susan Sollins. Camera: Philippe Charluet & Ian Serfontein. Sound: Mark Cornish & Paul Stadden. Editor: Joaquin Perez. Artwork Courtesy: Yinka Shonibare MBE. Thanks: Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney.

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

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Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA)

Known for using batik in costumed dioramas that explore race and colonialism, Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA)  also employs painting, sculpture, photography, and film in work that disrupts and challenges our notions of cultural identity. Taking on the honorific MBE as part of his name in everyday use, Shonibare plays with the ambiguities and contradictions of his attitude toward the Establishment and its legacies of colonialism and class. In multimedia projects that reveal his passion for art history, literature, and philosophy, Shonibare provides a critical tour of Western civilization and its achievements and failures.

“I wanted to see if there was a way of actually transcending those barriers, and seeing if those barriers could somehow be pushed down.”

Yinka Shonibare MBE (RA)

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