Frank Bowling, “Discussion on Black Art,” Arts Magazine, 1969

Frank Bowling's essay "Discussion on Black Art" in a 1969 edition of "Arts Magazine."

April 1969, vol. 43, no. 6, p. 16.

In early 1969, Bowling began writing on Black art for Arts Magazine. He contributed there and to other publications through 1971. His essays articulated an intense suspicion about Black art as a separate and readily definable category of art, believing the Black experience to be too subtle and complex to monolithically categorize and interpret.

In a three-part essay published between 1969 and 1970 in Arts Magazine, Bowling reflected on wider issues in Black art, lending a vocabulary to art criticism that he felt was missing: “What distinguishes or creates the uniqueness of the black artist is not only the color of his skin, but the experience he brings to his art that forge, inform, and feed it and link him essentially to the rest of the black people.”