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Sculptures by Hank Willis Thomas (Essay Sample)


With specific examples and sample works, analyze the sculpturing works by hank willis thomas

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Sculptures by Hank Willis Thomas
Hank Wills Thomas is an African-American photographer and visual artist. His main point of interests in sculpturing revolves on race, popular culture, and advertising. Born on March 17, 1976 in Plainfield, New Jersey, Thomas is a popular and well-known artist. Through his talented artistic sculptures, Hank Willis Thomas has received honorary awards including winning the Aperture West Book Prize, featuring of his work in other publications such as the Reflection in Black, and other several exhibitions in galleries and museums. Thomas’ sculptures portray a reflection on the social injustices against the blacks. Through his photographic and visual art, he tries to communicate the essence of equality among races manifested in the strengths and abilities of blacks in the society. Also, as portrayed by his sculptures, he significantly condemns injustices based on racial groups and expresses his concern on the smooth convergence among different ethnic and racial groups.
Though his sculptures revolve around the apartheid regime in South Africa, they communicate significantly on behalf of the racially discriminated African Americans in the United States. For instance, Thomas sculptures the heads and arms of the black miners in South Africa. This sculpture contains the ten out of the thirteen miners, initially pictured by Ernest Cole, as they experience a humiliating medical inspection by the white doctors. Thomas captions the sculpture "Raise Up." The imagery portrayed by the sculpture is not appealing. After undergoing through the humiliating experience, the sign later signifies the industry’s power to manipulate the worker’s body ( Then, the sculpture turns out to be a sign of insurgency that leads to exhortation and subsequent rebellion of the Black Americans against their oppressors. Rising of arms signifies surrender, but through the captioning by Thomas, it ignites and challenges the Blacks to fight against the powers of slavery and racial discrimination
Thomas’ work depends solely on the past rather than the present. The sculptures emphasize the past African experiences under the power of colonial rule, as depicted in pictures and photographs. Thomas converts a rather two-dimensional script into a tangible form reflecting the past. In his work, Thomas sculptures the captives’ poking of hands through the police truck as it drives away from the Supreme Court in South Africa ( Thomas designs a similar sculpture of a black hand clenching a fist through a wooden bar. Most African leaders sp...
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