Florence Blackwell '21 Contributes to Internationally-Recognized Project on Black Subjects in European Art

Young Black Man Carrying a Bow,
Hyacinthe Rigaud, Young Black Man Carrying a Bow, 1696

Art History and Photography double major Florence Blackwell is among the international contributors to the Blackness, Immobility, & Visibility in Europe project recently published in the peer-reviewed Journal I8: A Journal of 18th Century Art and Culture.

Florence joins students and faculty from universities such as Yale, London's Courtauld Institute, UCLA, and Columbia University, as well as professionals from museums such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Gemäldegalerie in Berlin to contribute scholarship on the representation of Black subjects in European art from 1600-1800. 

Florence learned about the Blackness, Immobility, & Visibility project from Art Historian and College of Arts & Media professor Maria Buszek, who is the mentor for Florence’s Art History thesis exploring the presence of Black Africans in European Renaissance artworks. Through her research for the thesis, which has received an Undergraduate Research Opportunity Grant, Florence says she was pleasantly surprised to discover scholars and artists who have already made remarkable strides in thinking about racial dynamics in Renaissance Europe.

After having the opportunity to speak with a handful of prominent scholars about their research and learning Journal18 was seeking contributors to assist with composing a timeline chronicling Black representation in Western art, she felt compelled to add a discoveries from her own research, thus contributing to the Blackness, Immobility, & Visibility in Europe (1600-1800) collaborative timeline.

“Aside from being a published contributor for this project, what makes me more excited is that scholars across the globe are passionate about uncovering the complex experiences of Black Africans in the early Modern era," says Florence.


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