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By Culturekiosque Staff

NEW YORK, 9 MARCH 2015 — Manhattan gallerists Mitchell-Innes & Nash have announced the recent acquisition of William Pope.L's The Black Factory by the Museum of Modern Art, NY. The Black Factory, an expansive multimedia archive produced and compiled during the artist’s associated 2004-2006 performance tour project across the United States, is the third major work by the artist to be acquired for the museum’s permanent collection.

Film still from WILLIAM POPE.L, Sum Film, 2007
(c) Pope.L

The Black Factory archive is a collection of objects, films, commercial products, props and documents, which the artist and his Factory team produced and accumulated during the course of The Black Factory project. Taking the model of a "tour", Pope.L staged a performative dialogue centering on a host of divisive topics—immigration, global trade, feminism, poverty—with "blackness," in the artist’s words, as "a lure and a provocation." Using The Black Factory truck as a hub of interaction, Pope.L and his team traveled throughout the United States gathering materials considered representative of "blackness" by the local communities with whom they engaged. These objects were then assumed into The Black Factory archives, along with written and visual documentation. You can visit the newly renovated Black Factory website launching late March 2015 at

William Pope.L has an upcoming solo exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles entitled, Trinket, on view from 20 March through 28 June 2015. Trinket is the largest museum presentation of Pope.L’s work to date, and will feature new and recent work, including a new performance conceived specifically for the exhibition. William Pope.L’s photograph, Foraging (asphyxia version) (1993-95/2008), is also the cover of this month’s issue of Artforum, with a feature in 500 Words as well as an essay written by David Joselit.

WILLIAM POPE.L, Trinket, 2007-8/2015
(c) Pope.L

William Pope.L is a visual and performance artist and educator whose work investigates the binaries and preconceived notions embedded within contemporary culture. Pope.L has been making multi-disciplinary works since the 1970s which examine societal conceptions surrounding ontology, gender, race and social value. Two substantial monographs have been published to survey his practice: Pope.L: Showing Up To Withhold, The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago, 2014 and The Friendliest Black Artist in America, The MIT Press, 2002. His work has been exhibited and is included in the permanent collections of numerous international institutions. He currently lives and works in Chicago, IL, where he is an Associate Professor in the Department of Visual arts at the University of Chicago.

Related Culturekiosque Archives

William Pope.L : eRacism

Kréyol Factory: Rites and Passage

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