Born and raised in Portland, Ore., Carrie Mae Weems is internationally recognized for her powerful photography-based art that investigates issues of race, gender, and societal class. Carrie Mae Weems: Three Decades of Photography and Video presents more than 200 photographs, videos, and installations tracing the evolution of Weems’ career.
On her 21st birthday, Weems received a camera as a gift and quickly realized its potential to express abstract political and social theories and incite change. During the past 30 years, her work has explored a variety of issues, providing a complex picture of humanity and creating greater awareness and compassion for difference.
Featuring some of her most groundbreaking work, including Ain’t Jokin’, From Here I Saw What Happened and I Cried, Ritual and Revolution, and the recent series Constructing History: A Requiem to Mark the Moment, Weems’ work will challenge audiences by highlighting issues of power, race, and gender.
This is not the first time that the Museum has featured Weems’ photography. In 1994, the Museum presented an early exhibition of the artist’s work. This earlier exhibition, Carrie Mae Weems, was organized by the National Museum of Women in the Arts.
Opening during Black History Month, this retrospective will engage audiences in discussions of the African-American experience through art. Programs and community partnerships include Portland Center Stage’s production of Clybourne Park and the Oregon History Museum’s exhibition All Aboard: Railroading and Portland’s Black Community.