MoAD’s physical building may be closed due to the mandatory shelter-in-place, but you can still get your fill of art and artists of the African Diaspora. Each Wednesday at 1:00 pm PST, join MoAD staff members as we visit some of our favorite artists in their studios to see what they’re currently working on and how their work is changing as a result of the quarantine. This is a rare opportunity to hear from artists directly from their studios.

We will follow all talks with an audience Q&A.

This talk is co-presented with Claire Oliver Gallery

Barbara Earl Thomas is a Seattle-based award-winning writer and visual artist with a career that spans more than 30 years. Her far-ranging exhibits include The Savannah Contemporary Art Museum and the Seattle and Tacoma Art Museums with solo exhibits at the Meadows Museum in Shreveport, Louisiana and the Evansville Museum of Art and Technology in Indiana. Her works, widely collected, are included in the Portland, Seattle and Tacoma Art Museums and private and corporate collections such as Microsoft,  21c Museum Hotel (Louisville, KY) and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

In 2013 Thomas received the Seattle Mayor’s Arts Award and in 2016, the Washington State Governor’s Arts award, the Artist Trust, Irving and Yvonne Twining Humber Award and the Seattle Stranger Genius Award for excellence in the arts. She was also nationally noted for her exhibition “Heaven On Fire,” a major career survey with The Bainbridge Island Art Museum. Her work has been widely featured nationally; with the John Braseth Gallery at the Seattle Art Fair (2016), and at EXPO Chicago (2017, 2018) and Pulse Contemporary Art Fair (2018) with Claire Oliver Gallery (New York).  

As of 2019, she is working on commissions for the Sound Transit’s I-90 station and the new Multnomah County Central Courthouse (Portland, OR). She is also preparing for the 2019 Pulse Contemporary Art Fair in Miami. Thomas joined the Claire Oliver Gallery in 2017 with her solo exhibit “Blood Letting and Other Stories.”

Thomas is a graduate of the School of Art, University of Washington where she received her Master of Arts in 1977. She counts herself most fortunate to have had mentorships with Michael Spafford and Jacob Lawrence who have both influenced her work. She will tell you that these two men were not only supportive but crucial friends in her life.

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Generous support for this project provided by Art Bridges and the Westridge Foundation

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