The International Review of African American Art (IRAAA) is the ONLY periodical spanning the history of African American art and covering contemporary art, design and visual culture! Cross-disciplinary with a nexus in African American art, IRAAA deepens insight into numerous things while offering visual pleasure and stimulation. It is a window into all realms, real and imaginary; present, past and future. ART IS ALL!
IRAA was formally known as Black Art: An International Quarterly and made its debut in 1976. It was published by Samella Lewis and two associates. It included an article on Elizabeth Catlett with a four-page color pull-out reproduction of a Catlett print titled Boys. The involvement of Lewis and Catlett in this important venture was the flowering of a long association. Lewis, the first African American woman to earn a PH.D. in art history (Ohio State, 1951), had been encouraged to pursue a career in art by Catlett. Catlett was the first college art teacher of Luis and became a lifelong friend. Black Art:An International Quarterly primarily covered the visual expression of black people in the United States and Africa.
In 1984, Black Art became The International Review of African American Art (IRAAA), as the publication was broadening its focus to include the visual art of African-descended people throughout the Americas. One of the special issues produced during this period was “Bahia: The Power of Tradition.” Its focus was on the visual arts of African-descended people in Brazil. In 1992, the operations of the IRAAA were transferred to Hampton University, Samella Lewis’ undergraduate alma mater.
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Deanna Brooks, Assistant Editor of IRAAA
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