Jane Tyndall of Tyndall Galleries writes that the North Carolina Museum of Art has recently acquired the triptych Reminiscing by Beverly McIver (I wrote a little about McIver’s show at Jane’s gallery last year).
Quoting Jane who quotes Preview: The Magazine of the North Carolina Museum of Art, March/April 2006:
“The Museum has recently acquired several new works of art that expand the scope and diversity of the 20th century and contemporary collections and also reflect the global, cross-cultural dialogue taking place in the art
world today. The new pieces include painting, photography and sculpture by nationally and internationally known artists and artists with North Carolina connections. …
“Beverly McIver grew up in Greensboro, North Carolina, and now lives in Arizona. Since the early 1990s, she has examined racial stereotypes in an ongoing series of expressionist self-portraits. The paintings deal with her African American identity and how she perceives her role in a society that historically has marginalized minorities and women. Often McIver paints herself in blackface – a reference to her childhood desire to become a professional clown, and also a way to confront and reclaim stereotypes head-on by changing the conventional clown white-face to black.
“Reminiscing, a self-portrait in triplicate, reveals its subject from three different vantage points – she stares off into the distance, looks down with despondence and then turns her head to the side, never meeting the viewer’s
gaze. Failing to tuck her hair up under her wig and exposing her emotional disarray, McIver paints a woman disheveled in appearance and in mood. This portrayal shows McIver striving to come to terms with her mother’s recent death. Without emphasizing it, the artist has again painted herself in
blackface, for she is rarely out of character, even at times of personal mourning.”