Please note that this print is a pre-order. Prints will ship the week of December 6th
Cecil McDonald, Jr. (American, b. 1965)
The Village Now Knows My Name, 2010
Archival Pigment Print
10 ½ x 7 inch image on 11 x 14 paper
Signed Edition of 30
Cecil McDonald, Jr. uses photography, video, and performance to explore the intersections of masculinity, familial relations, and the artistic and intellectual pursuits of Black culture. This particular project was created during McDonald’s artist residency in Lucerne, Switzerland. He used James Baldwin’s essay “Stranger in the Village” as a source of inspiration; in his essay from the collection Notes of a Native Son, Baldwin uses his encounters with the villagers of the remote Swiss village of Loèche-les-Bains as an occasion to ponder the history of Western white supremacy and racism. Exploring parallels of Baldwin’s experiences in Switzerland and his own, McDonald created a multimedia work that deploys photography, Baldwin’s text, installation, and video to create The Village Now Knows My Name. As he explains: “If Baldwin’s idea that ‘people are trapped in history and history is trapped in them,’ then I must consider the notion that people and their histories can both inform and free each other, in order to move forward to form and construct meaningful narratives and nuanced histories.”
Cecil McDonald, Jr. studied fashion, house music, and dance club culture before receiving an MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago. His work is in the permanent collections of the Cleveland Museum of Art, Bank of America’s LaSalle Photography Collection, and the Museum of Contemporary Photography. He has received awards from the Joyce Foundation Midwest Voices & Visions Award, the Artadia Award, 3Arts Teaching Artist Award and the Swiss Benevolent Society, Lucerne, Switzerland, Residency. In The Company of Black, his first comprehensive monograph published by Candor Arts, was short listed for best first photographic book of the year 2017, by the Aperture Foundation and Paris Photo.