In celebration of Black History Month, the Escalette Collection of Art shares ways to engage with artists whose works explore Black history, culture, and its influence on America. This blog post features things to see, listen, read, experience, and create this month and beyond.

See Artists on Display

April Bey, They Say “I’m so jealous” but They Really Mean “Envious”, mixed media on wood panel, 2020. Purchased with funds from the Ellingson Family.

As a “museum without walls,” the Escalette Collection displays artwork in evolving displays throughout Chapman’s Campus. These are just some of the works by Black artists featured in the exhibitions on campus.

April Bey is exhibited on the second floor of Roosevelt Hall. Bey’s interdisciplinary artwork is an introspective and social critique of American and Bahamian culture, contemporary pop culture, feminism, generational theory, social media, AfroFuturism, AfroSurrealism, post-colonialism and constructs of race within supremacist systems.

In Paul Sepuya’s closeup studies of human forms, subjects are enmeshed in creative, exchanges of desire. His work is exhibited on the first floor of Moulton Hall.

Documenting intellectual, emotional, and psychological environments through her multidisciplinary practice, Carla Jay Harris is exhibited on the second floor of Smith Hall.

As a portrait photographer, Hakeem Adewumi seeks out the harmonies between sitters and the culture around them, capturing moments of resonance between individual experiences and shared histories. His work is exhibited on the first (in the History Dept. offices) and second floors (study lounge) of Roosevelt Hall.

Listen to Podcasts & Lectures

Listen to this podcast featuring Ivan Forde, an artist who works across many mediums, from printmaking to digital animation and sound performance to installation, retelling stories from epic poetry casting himself as every character.

Watch the “Photographing Black Queer Identities” lecture by Hakeem Adewumi

Listen to this podcast featuring Karen Hampton

Read Blog Posts

Peter Williams, Geegee (He had red Hair), oil-based enamel and graphite on canvas, 2019. Purchased with funds from the Ellingson Family

Read this blog post about Karen Hampton, whose work not only captures her own family history, but also addresses how the legacy of slavery continues to shape the lives of African Americans today.

Read this blog post about Peter Williams, who uses boldness and humor to chronicle current and historical events, interspersing pictorial narratives with personal anecdotes and fictional characters in order to create paintings about the diverse experiences of Black Americans.

Read this blog post about June Edmonds, who explores the psychological construct of skin color through pattern and abstract painting. Her abstract paintings to investigate how color, repetition, movement, and balance can serve as conduits to spiritual contemplation and interpersonal connection to her African-American roots.

Read this blog post about Rotimi Fani-Kayode, a photographer who used his art to capture the black queer experience, to reject homophobia, and to fight for equal political representation during the AIDS crisis.

Experience a Virtual Exhibition

Explore and experience the virtual exhibition Begin/Again: Marking Black Memories, recently displayed in Roosevelt Hall this past year.

Create a Panther Perspective

June Edmonds, Olé, Oil on canvas, 2016. Purchased with funds from the Escalette Endowment.

Feeling inspired by the artists or artwork featured on campus? Share your response with the Chapman family by creating a 2-3 minute Panther Perspective audio recording. These responses can take a multitude of forms, whether it be a personal experience, more researched analysis, poetry or music, etc.

Panther Perspectives is a project designed to foster interest and engagement with the Escalette Permanent Collection of Art. Members of the Chapman community are invited to engage with a work from the Collection that is meaningful or interesting or to them and provide their opinion on it. These ‘perspectives’ will be recorded and made available as part of the interpretation of the artwork, being accessible to viewers via a QR code. This project seeks to showcase a range of voices from Chapman Students, Faculty, and Staff with the purpose of promoting engagement with art and allowing the campus community to build meaningful relationships with the Collection. Submit your recording HERE.