January 17-May 10, 2020. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 10 a.m. to 5
p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.(September through June); Saturday and
Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. In 1952, while a student at La
Esmeralda--Mexico's national school of art--American artist John Wilson
(1922-2015) painted a powerful mural that he titled The Incident. The
fresco depicted a scene of a racial-terror lynching at the hands of the
Ku Klux Klan, as witnessed by a young African American family. Although
the mural is no longer extant, this exhibition brings together publicly
for the first time nearly all of Wilson's known preparatory sketches and
painted studies for it, as well as related prints and drawings.
Inspired by the political and social activism of the Mexican muralists,
in particular José Clemente Orozco, and haunted by images of lynchings
that he had seen in newspapers as a child, Wilson revisited the subject
of The Incident over many years as a way of grappling with racial
violence, both past and present. The works on view, some disturbing in
content, encourage contemporary viewers to do the same.