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Introduction

Tschabalala Self (born 1990) utilizes materials in unconventional ways to subvert the status quo, creating layered, quilt-like portraits that depict Black American life through references to contemporary culture and Black America’s past. The figures in her work take up space on large pieces of paper or colorful canvases and seem to be caught in private, joyous moments: dancing with a lover, reclining on a bed, greeting a friend. These characters hold power over how they present themselves and how they are seen, exerting agency in the myth creation that surrounds Black bodies like theirs.

The fantasies and attitudes surrounding the Black female body are both accepted and rejected within my practice, and through this disorientation, new possibilities arise. I am attempting to provide alternative, and perhaps fictional explanations for the voyeuristic tendencies towards the gendered and racialized body; a body which is both exalted and abject.
- Tschabalala Self

Self’s work has been shown at the ICA Boston, Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, Yuz Museum in Shanghai, Kunsthalle Duesseldorf, Haus der Kunst in Munich, Philadelphia Museum of Art, New Museum in New York, and the Studio Museum in Harlem, among others. She received her MFA from Yale with a focus on Painting and Printmaking and was selected for the Studio Museum AIR Program in 2019.

New Works 2

New Works 2 Thumbnails
Tschabalala Self, Bean Tower Take Notice, 2023

Bean Tower Take Notice, 2023
Uniqiue cast and pigmented paper in artist designed frame
51 1/4 x 77 x 5 3/16 inches 

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Tschabalala Self, The Refusal, 2023

The Refusal, 2023
Collage with silkscreen, etching, cut paper, cast paper, cast resin, thread, and laser engraving on water colored, handmade paper
65 1/2 x 53 inches
Edition of 15

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Tschabalala Self, Black Panther, 2022

Black Panther, 2022
Etching with gold leaf and artist designed frame
46 x 70 1/4 inches
Edition of 15

Inquire
Tschabalala Self, Bean Tower Take Notice, 2023

Bean Tower Take Notice, 2023
Uniqiue cast and pigmented paper in artist designed frame
51 1/4 x 77 x 5 3/16 inches 

Tschabalala Self, The Refusal, 2023

The Refusal, 2023
Collage with silkscreen, etching, cut paper, cast paper, cast resin, thread, and laser engraving on water colored, handmade paper
65 1/2 x 53 inches
Edition of 15

Tschabalala Self, Black Panther, 2022

Black Panther, 2022
Etching with gold leaf and artist designed frame
46 x 70 1/4 inches
Edition of 15

Selected Exhibitions

Selected Solo Exhibitions

2022   Tschabalala Self, Consortium Museum, Dijon, France
2021   Tschabalala Self, Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD
2021   Tschabalala Self, Centro per Arte Contemporanea Luigi, Pecci, Italy
2020   Tschabalala Self, ICA Boston, Boston, MA
2019   Bodega Run, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA
2018   Bodega Run, Yuz Museum, Shanghai, China
2017   Tschabalala Self, Parasol Unit Foundation for Contemorary Art, London, England

Selected Group Exhibitions

2021   Journey Thruogh a Body, Kunsthalle Duesseldorf, Duesseldorf, Germany
2021   SWEAT, Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany
2020   Radical Figures: Painting in the New Millennium, Whitechapel Gallery, London, England
2019   Present Tense: Recent Gifts of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia Art Museum, Philadelphia
2019   Dirty Protest: Selections from the Hammer Contemporary Collection, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA

2017   TriggerGender as a Tool and a Weapon, New Museum, New York, NY
2016   Desire, Moore Building, Miami, FL
2015   A Contellation, Studio Museum, Harlem, NY

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