At 77, Howardena Pindell Exorcises a Chilling Memory From Childhood.
The artist’s first new video in 25 years, on view at the Shed, mines the history of violence against African-Americans.
In more than half a century as an artist, Howardena Pindell has made many hundreds of paintings and drawings and just three videos, yet one of those videos is arguably her best-known work. “Free, White and 21” (1980) depicts the artist recounting a litany of racist experiences, from being tied to a cot by a kindergarten teacher to discrimination in applying for jobs. Interspersed among the personal stories, Ms. Pindell appears as a second character in whiteface and a blonde wig. The white woman tells the Black narrator that she must be paranoid. “You won’t exist until we validate you,” she chides.
Image: Howardena Pindell at her home studio in Inwood, Manhattan
Devin Oktar Yalkin for The New York Times