The Power of Black Art and Visual Storytelling

Phyllis Stephens, A Colorful Journey, 2021. Image from Vanity Fair.

Writing for Vanity Fair, June Sarpong explores the history and importance of Black visual storytelling in the wake of George Floyd's death. While Black artists and art professionals have always demonstrated and experimented with their talents, Sarpong explores how Black diaspora creatives are finally getting the recognition that they deserve from the larger art world. However, the author also recognizes that greater representation on a global stage doesn‘t always ensure a brighter future for Black art professionals, as many have been exploited for their work without the appropriate pay or credit.

“To the eye and spirit, pictures are just what poetry and music are to the ear and heart… Man is the only picture-making animal in the world. He alone of all the inhabitants of earth has the capacity and passion for pictures." - Frederick Douglass