feature: visual artist, gordon skinner: decolonizing through art

September 5, 2014

The power of art is embedded in the mind of the artist, becoming vulnerable so that it commits to its greatest potential. And though art is indeed subjective, knowing the artist’s muse makes for an even greater understanding of what we see- the product of a brilliant mind! Some people have an innate gift for combing their state of being to their craft and painter, Gordon Skinner happens to be one! There’s an urge to enlighten in which he has commited himself to. Within his wondrous paintings lie a divine connection between the past, present, and future of the African diaspora. 

By Tip Jordan,  AFROPUNK Contributor

“I’m interested in the discovery and play between what is revealed and what is hidden. I’m also interested in exploring how the use of masks echoes the greater tension between the contingent and ephemeral self and our society, between the viewer and the viewed. It presents emphatically that what we see is always ghosted by what is concealed.”- Gordon Skinner

“What excites me most in painting is the process of pushing through my notions of self, community and the culture at large, and trying to capture on canvas the complexity of a subject’s true face (including my own).”- Gordon Skinner

“My goal in painting is to expose our atavistic and semi -suppressed ferocity. I use the canvas to explore the social, racial and gender driven aspects of our subconscious, and to push these competing impulses toward synthesis. With each character, I am trying to bind the deeply personal to a more universal truth.” -Gordon Skinner 
As I observed his creations, I noticed a similar style and abstract element to the late, Jean Michel-Basquiat. Though his influence is great, Gordon has created a route for himself to travel on. What his imagination reflects to us viewers, take on the shape as story-telling, forcing us to inquire more about his intent.

Gordon Skinner currently has three assemblages at ROX Gallery in NYC. The exhibition will be up until September 15th. Visit here for more details and to view more of his artwork!

* Tip Jordan’s website: