Dindga McCannon

on “Where We At” and the women of the blues
Osman Can Yerebakan, Artforum, September 29, 2021

Music seemed to melt into color as Dindga McCannon walked me through “In Plain Sight” at Fridman Gallery. The songs of Ma Rainey and Gladys Bentley played behind a recent work, Blues Queens, 2021, a shrinelike, quilt-covered column commemorating blueswomen of the early twentieth century. Footage of their performances looped in the background, the black-and-white of the videos contrasting with the textile’s shimmering blue tonalities. A key figure in the Black Arts Movement, McCannon cofounded the groundbreaking collective “Where We At” Black Women Artists, Inc., with Kay Brown and Faith Ringgold in 1971. On view through October 17 and gathering nearly fifty-five years of painting, sewing, sculpting, and printmaking, “In Plain Sight” is the Harlem-born, Philadelphia-based artist’s first solo show at a commercial gallery.