Collection

Featured Works

Description

On this page you’ll find a rotating selection of works from the permanent collection, chosen by members of our community, including curators but also teachers, artists, and staff members. They tell us about a work that has recently caught their eye and why, sharing their reflections on what they see and what you might look for.

Challenging the Color of a Nation

David Hammons, African-American Flag, 1990

 

David Hammons (American, b. 1943) re-creates the familiar pattern of the American flag using the colors of the flag for the Universal Negro Improvement Association (U.N.I.A), an early twentieth-century black nationalist organization The U.N.I.A. flag featured broad bands of red, black, and green as symbolic colors intended to unite all people of African origin under one banner. Hammons’s new version conflates the two flags, perhaps implying that a black nation resides within the United States or, conversely, that such a distinction is impossible. Hammons created African-American Flag for Black USA, a 1990 exhibition at the Museum Overholland in Amsterdam, which was the first exhibition of African American art to be organized by a European museum.

The Over Holland Foundation has pledged this important work of art to honor the legacy of President Barack Obama.

(October 2017)