DMV Color

Open book features photograph of a child with medium-brown skin on the left side of the fold and the words
Nov 04, 2019, to Mar 04, 2020

Washington, D.C., and its surroundings have long been home to a rich community of artists of color, including those born and raised here and others who built connections to the region while attending area art schools and universities. DMV Color features an eclectic assortment of contemporary works by women of African American, Asian American, and Latina heritage with ties to the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia—known locally as the DMV. The artists’ books, graphic novels, photobooks, and zines depict intimacies of family life, legacies of enslavement, dislocation tied to immigration, changes resulting from rampant development, and other topics that illustrate facets of life in the DMV.

Featured artists: Sabrina Barekzai, Elizabeth Catlett, Suzanne Coley, Magdalena Cordero, Ibe’ Crawley, Jamila Zahra Felton, Malaka Mercene Gharib, Robin Ha, Loïs Mailou Jones, Jihae Kwon, Sarah Matthews, María Veroníca San Martín, Gail Shaw-Clemons, Julie Sheah, Clarissa T. Sligh, Renée Stout, Ruth Tam, Carolyn Toye, and Jennifer White-Johnson.

The center pages of a book are divided into three sections: solid red, yellow and pink flowers with green leaves and stems on a blue background, and vertical blue and green stripes. On the red fabric is a portion of a person’s face printed in black and a beaded black flower.

Suzanne Coley, All I Have, 2018; Artist’s book; Courtesy of the artist; On loan from Private collection; Photo by Emily Shaw, Courtesy of Betty Boyd Dettre Library & Research Center.

Related Media

Online Exhibition

This online exhibition provides an immersive look at the themes and many works from the exhibition, with select audio contributions from the artists discussing their work.
Open book features photograph of a child with medium-brown skin on the left side of the fold and the words

Related Blog Post

Malaka Gharib's graphic memoir, I Was Their American Dream, chronicles her multicultural upbringing as the daughter of a Filipino Catholic mother and an Egyptian Muslim father.
View of the museum from outside showing the Neoclassical building from one corner. The building is a tan-colored stone with an arched doorway, long vertical windows, and detailed molding around the roof.
A spread from I Was Their American Dream, by Malaka Gharib; Photo credit: Clarkson Potter