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Frank Frazier

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Frank Frazier (b. 1943) is an Internationally revered sculptor, painter, potter, and collage artist. He is an icon.

Frank Frazier began his career at age seven creating paintings in his family’s home in Harlem. The inherent activist nature of his work stems from his formative years living in the Jim Crow South. As a loud voice in the civil rights movement and supporter of the diaspora, Frank has made a name for himself and has continued to push boundaries and inspire generations of black artists. His belief that “all artwork should deal with what’s going on in the universe at all times” ensures that his work remains continuously relevant and influential. His combination of materials and techniques takes reference and objects from his experience and travels.

The inclusion of textiles, cowry shells, raffia, and other materials collected during his many trips to Africa fuses his political work with his pseudo-vernacular style. The stylized figures in his work related to the diaspora reference the visual and material culture of West Africa and are both familiar and foreign.

Frank’s unyielding energy and dedication to art and political action has kept him active and at the forefront of the art and political world for over a half-century. 

Frank Frazier is an icon, a gift, a treasure, and a mentor to so many.  We are beyond honored to exhibit the work of such an accomplished man.

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                                                                                                   Frank Frazier began his work as a                                                                                                        fine artist early, at the age of seven. He was                                                                                                          creating paintings in his family’s Harlem, New                                                                                                        York City home. A husband and father of five,                                                                                                        he recalls growing up, “we were not poor, but                                                                                                      my family was a little different.” At the age of                                                                                                        15, his family moved to downtown New York

City, which precipitated his “getting into a lot of trouble” as a youngster.

A move to Queens, New York, brought with it a stint at a boys’ institution in upstate New York, but it also marked the point where Frazier turned his life around. While at the school, he was responsible for creating art for the “different bunks.” Teachers noticed his talent and later as a Sergeant in the Army during Vietnam, officers gave him the responsibility of painting art and shirts for the platoons.
Frazier’s designs included a mixture of different scenes which he completed for free; he and his fellow soldiers weren’t thinking about money when they did their work. Amazingly, after his stint in the service, “I recall my family throwing lots of my art away.” Ironically, today it is the love and support of his immediate and “great extended family” that inspires him.


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