Danielle Mckinney
Black History Month
ARTPIL / Prescription .136
Matthew Hong / February 2023

Black History Month is the month long observance and celebration in February with its origin in the United States to remember important people and events in the history of the African diaspora. It is mostly observed in the United States and Canada, and more recently adopted by Ireland and the UK, observed later in the year.

Meanhile just this week the United States moved to dissolve the House Oversight Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and state governments are launching a campaign to ban books and other curricula that tell an uncomfortable history of slavery and oppression, and continuing discrimination – a strange expression of reverse reparation, if not adding insult to injury.

Ta-Nehisi Coates, the acclaimed American author, journalist, and MacArthur Fellow, wrote The Case for Reparations and made a compelling argument before Congress. Still, talks of reparations keep dying in committees and a certain terror of supremacy continues to play out with increasing fervor and hostility on the House and Senate floors, trickling down the capital steps into neighborhood streets and private porches, parking lots and routine stops on commutes, and even catholic school classrooms. It’s not actually clear if America as a nation will ever overcome.

Welcome to the .136th edition of Prescriptions. This month, for our part we revisit some of the articles and profiles which seem pertinent as ever to recognize and celebrate the artists who have inspired and created and the struggle for civil – or human – rights in spite of the un-ease and the discomfort in the face of discrimination and the continued suffering.

  • Miranda July: New Society
    Mar 7 – Oct 14, 2024
    Fondazione Prada
    Milan, Italy

    Curated by Mia Locks, Miranda July: New Society is the first solo museum exhibition dedicated to Miranda July’s work. Spanning three decades, from the early 1990’s until today, the exhibition includes early short films, performance, and multimedia installations. The exhibition debuts F.A.M.I.L.Y (Falling Apart Meanwhile I Love You), a multi-channel video installation July made in collaboration with seven strangers via Instagram. (more…)

  • Ritual in Transfigured Time
    Mar 22 – May 26, 2024
    Aalst, Belgium

    The new NW is inaugurated with the opening exhibition Ritual in Transfigured Time, named after the 1946 short film of the same name by Maya Deren (Kiev, 1917–New York, 1961). Deren, whose life was driven by a desire for freedom, was a guiding light for us in devising the exhibition and film programme, as well as the principles of our revitalised organisation: dialogue, collaboration, experiment and the breaking down of boundaries. (more…)

  • Grey Crawford. Chroma, 1978–85, Vol 1
    Beam Editions

    In 1978 Grey Crawford created a body of colour photographic work that was so radical in its aesthetic and technique that few people to this day understand how it was made. Chroma documents late 70s Los Angeles in a period of radical urban transformation. Scenes of vernacular architecture, demolition sites and everyday places are contrasted with graphic forms that float on the surface and sit within the image. (more…)