High on my to-do list this week is making it to a screening of Night Catches Us , the Tanya Hamilton-directed film starring Kerry Washington and Anthony Mackie who are two ex-Black Panthers that try to sort out their personal and political identities after being estranged from each other for four years.
But what really excited me is that I heard that the art of Emory Douglas is shown in the film. Douglas is the graphic artist who created the Panther’s visual identity in posters, on signs, and in the organization’s weekly newspaper, The Black Panther, from 1967-1979. Starting when he was just 22, Douglas created some of the most arresting and effective revolutionary art ever.
AIGA described him as “the most prolific and persistent graphic agitator in the American Black Power movements.”
You can see some of his works here, from his representation of the Oakland police as pigs to images of Huey and women in the struggle. Listen to and watch this audio slideshow from the good people at Babylon Falling as Douglas explains his motivations and shares a peek at his enormous collection of political art. I missed his show last year at the New Museum, and I’m still kicking myself for it.