Works in the Collection
Frank Smith (b. 1935), a native of Chicago, and former Howard University Professor, is one of the original members of AfriCOBRA (African Coalition of Black Revolutionary Artists). The artistic ideology of AfriCOBRA springs from the ethos of African American and Pan-African spiritual and political culture. Smith’s work is improvisational and embraces colorful geometric forms, and African-inspired symbols and imagery. The versatility of Smith’s works on canvas and paper gives way to the formation of two-dimensional soft sculptural images derived through an extemporaneous process of draping. By working on several pieces simultaneously, Smith combines disjointed rhythms and syncopated patterns of paint and mixed media by sewing the canvas or paper together. Bright zigzag stitching joins colorful patches of painted patterns and found objects. Smith has had more than seventy exhibitions in museums and galleries across the US, Africa, and the Caribbean. His works can be found in many public, private, and corporate collections including the Broad Museum in L.A., DuSable Museum, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Harvey Gantt Center for African-American Arts & Culture, Hampton University, Morgan State University, Baltimore, Washington Convention Center, and Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC and the Oakland Museum in Oakland California, Us Embassy in Djibouti, Nigeria, and Cameroon.