A half century before NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick took a knee, gold medal sprinter Tommie Smith raised a fist at the 1968 Summer Olympic Games in Mexico to protest abuse of human rights around the world and in response to the struggle for civil rights in the United States. His historic gesture, and its reverberations over the past 50 years, are explored in this important exhibition organized by the High Museum of Art.
The exhibition, which introduces several new works, and is the culmination of a multiyear collaboration between Los Angeles–based conceptual artist Glenn Kaino and Smith. The exhibition features sculptural installations and drawings by Kaino and Smith, objects from the Tommie Smith archives, and a series of drawings contributed by students from across the United States. By bridging the past and present, With Drawn Arms powerfully resonates in the current moment of reckoning with racial injustice in America.