APB's (Afro-Parisian Brothers) Artist: Barkley L. Hendricks (American, 1945–2017, B.F.A./M.F.A. 1972)

1978

Modern and Contemporary Art

On view, 3rd floor, Modern and Contemporary Art and Design

From the exhibition Embodied: Black Identities in American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery:


APB’s was composed from a photograph that Barkley Hendricks took in Paris in the 1970s. With their sartorial precision and provocative slickness, the modern dandies in the portrait embody the cosmopolitan coolness of seventies’ black culture. The catchphrase “Black is Beautiful” resounds in their suave tailoring, natural hairstyles, and defiant stance, a self-awareness that plays up on histories of cultural nationalism, political activism, and a Pan-African consciousness associated with the era. While creating a sense of flatness through the monochromatic backdrop, Hendricks also evokes a psychological intensity—a sense of depth—in the surfeit of detail of these men’s spectacular self-fashioning. Read in light of the work’s title, which includes its own shorthand, these brothers—Hendricks included—assert a diasporic consciousness that also questions what black identity could be globally.

Medium

Oil and acrylic on linen

Dimensions

182.88 × 127 cm (72 × 50in.)

Credit Line

Janet and Simeon Braguin Fund

Accession Number

2005.31.1

Period

20th century

Classification
Disclaimer

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.

Bibliography

  • Pamela Franks and Robert E. Steele, Embodied: Black Identities in American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2010), 23, 54–56, ill.
  • Huey Copeland, "Figures and Grounds," Artforum (April 2009): 148, ill.
  • Trevor Schoonmaker, Birth of the Cool: Barkley L. Hendricks, exh. cat. (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 2008), p. 62, no. 36, ill.
  • "Acquisitions, July 1, 2005–June 30, 2006," Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin (2006): 164, 203, ill.

Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

human figures (visual works)

Signed

UR: B. Hendricks

Technical metadata and APIs

IIIF

Open in Mirador

View IIIF manifest

The International Image Interoperability Framework, or IIIF, is an open standard for delivering high-quality, attributed digital objects online at scale. Visit iiif.io to learn more

Linked Art

API response for this object

Linked Art is a Community working together to create a shared Model based on Linked Open Data to describe Art.