The Hybridity and Modernity of the Visual Harlem Renaissance
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This research examines how the visual arts of the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920s to the 1940s relates to the concepts of hybridization and modernism. During the movement, a new hybrid consciousness and identity were formed out of the duality of the African-American. From the 1920s, African-Americans have developed a new sense of creative expression in order to convey the hybridization of the 'New Negro'. This hybridization expresses itself through the focus on African subject matter presented in visual arts by African cloths, masks, objects and Egyptian masks integrated into artworks. Alternatively, through the expression of black folklore in visual arts, which is, in essence, already a hybridization as it is the experience of black people living in America. In addition, the hybridization of the Harlem Renaissance visual arts is also expressed through integrated modernist styles or aspects in the artworks by adopting modernist stylistic aspects or abstracting their painting style. Modernism is a relatively broad term, with its principal element the pursuit of change and progress by abandoning traditional forms of art. The African-American seems to have been in pursuit of progress in the sense of abandoning the tradition of derogatory black representation by white artists to take ownership of the black figure in art while modernizing and developing it towards new cultural heights.