Painted at the height of the AFRICOBRA period, this image celebrates the life of Malcolm X, the giant to whom the title of the painting refers. We see a range of different images showing the humanity of this influential Black leader, including rare scenes with him smiling, pensively studious, laid back and cool. This picture epitomizes the philosophies that informed the foundation of AFRICOBRA, including the ideal of showing proud and positive images of Black heroes, and the ideal of capturing the complex humanity essential to the Black community, subverting the one-dimensional depictions normally associated with figures such as Malcolm X. Aesthetically, we see many formal visual strategies at work, including "Cool-Ade" colors, the use of text, the incorporation of a range of textures, and a mixture of figuration and abstract symbology.
Africobra50, 2019, Kavi Gupta, Chicago, IL, United States
Africobra: Nation Time, 2019, La Biennale di Venezia, Venice, Italy
Exhibited, Cleveland Musuem of Art, "Heritage: Wadsworth and Jae Jarrell", 2017