Arthur Jafa (b. 1960) is widely considered one of the most important artists working today. Over a long career, he has moved in and out of the worlds of film, music and art without ever making a permanent home in one. All of his work deals with the great and original creative power of Black American culture, as opposed to the harsh reality of Black American life.
The exhibition entitled Magnumb is the biggest presentation of Arthur Jafa’s art to date and features his key filmic works, including a new video work made specifically for this exhibition, alongside a large number of works in other media, several of which were also made for the occasion.
Arthur Jafa first gained worldwide attention in 2016 with his video work Love is the Message, the Message is Death. Running roughly eight minutes, the work is a virtuosic cut of viral videos and historical footage of American notables like Barack Obama, Serena Williams and Martin Luther King alongside news clips and handheld footage of police brutality against Black Americans, scored to the Kanye West song Ultralight Beam. Deeply touching and scathing, Jafa’s work highlights the discrepancy between the fame and status of Black stars and the treatment of the African-American population in general. The work can be experienced in the exhibition.
Source: Louisiana Museum of Modern Art