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Sun, Sep 24



Barbara Bullock: Fearless Vision, a retrospective of the artist’s illustrious career.

Fearless Vision will showcase Bullock’s development over sixty years of creative practice, from the paintings and drawings of the late 1960s and 1970s to the cut, painted, and sculpted works in heavy-weight paper she is known for today.

Barbara Bullock: Fearless Vision, a retrospective of the artist’s illustrious career.
Barbara Bullock: Fearless Vision, a retrospective of the artist’s illustrious career.

Time & Location

Sep 24, 2023, 11:30 PM – Jan 24, 2024, 11:30 PM

Philadelphia, 9201 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19118, USA

About The Event

The exhibition will demonstrate the artist’s participation in a national movement in the arts to strengthen Black identity through explorations of African art, music, and dance and the impact of her extensive travels through Africa and the Caribbean.

Socially-driven artists are accepted as part of the mix in the arts today, but this was not always the case. Bullock stands out as a pioneering figure in Philadelphia whose work extends outside the studio and into the city, especially into the city’s Black communities, with an embrace of African art as inspiration, declaration of strength, and path to reclaiming an ancestral cultural identity. Forcefully, but gently with the beauty of her art and teaching, Bullock takes a stand for social justice, working in the cultural and educational spheres of Philadelphia.  Fearless Vision shows how Bullock’s studio practice evolved in dialogue with her work as both educator and social activist, exploring the cross-fertilization of ideas about art and social healing.

Bullock worked in K-12 schools, museums, community organizations, senior centers, and public spaces. Her long-term leadership of the art programs at the Ile-Ife Black Humanitarian Center (1971-1975) and Prints for Progress (1980-1993) were seminal experiences in her creative practice. The exhibition will include many of the objects that Bullock made to inspire students and participants in community projects such as game boards, pop-up books, hats, fans, boxes, altars, and miniature theaters. They share a vocabulary of figurative elements, animal forms, patterns, textures, and colors that characterize Bullock's studio practice.

Woodmere collaborated with independent art historians and curators Leslie King Hammond and Lowery Stokes Sims in preparing an oral history with Bullock that is transcribed as a central element in the accompanying catalogue publication. The catalogue will include a chronology of education projects that follows the artist’s archive and lesson plans donated by Bullock to Woodmere’s historic archives of Philadelphia’s artists. The catalogue will be available at the Woodmere Art Museum Store.

Support for Barbara Bullock: Fearless Vision is provided by The Edna Wright Andrade Fund of the Philadelphia Foundation, the William M. King Charitable Foundation, Robert and Frances Kohler, the Petrucci Family Foundation Collection of African American Art, The Dorothy del Bueno Endowed Exhibition Fund at Woodmere, the Nixon Family on behalf of James V. Nixon, Jr., and other generous contributors, including those who wish to remain anonymous. Woodmere thanks the Lomax family and WURD, who are the exhibition’s media partners.

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