GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Grand Rapids Art Museum and ArtXchangeGR are collaborating for a unique discussion about the HBO documentary, Black Art: In the Absence of Light.

The free event starts at 6:30 p.m. Saturday July 24th at the GRAM. Following a thirty-minute welcome reception of wine and cheese, the screening of the 90-minute documentary will begin. Then a 30-minute community dialogue will take place with a group of panelists.

Black Art: In the Absence of Light gives viewers a glimpse at the contributions of Black American artists in today’s contemporary art world. It looks at some of the work of the foremost Black visual artists working today. The film adds depth to the art through the context and insights of scholars and historians, along with interviews from a new generation of work African American curators and artists including Theaster Gates, Kerry James Marshall, Faith Ringgold, Amy Sherald, and Carrie Mae Weems.

Saturday’s event is free, each person who registers can receive up to four tickets. For more information, email

Event schedule:

6:30 — 7:00 p.m. — Doors Open, welcome reception, wine and cheese
7:00 — 8:30 p.m. — Black Art: In the Absence of Light Documentary showing
8:30 — 9:00 p.m. — Community dialogue and panel discussion

List of panelists:

  • Alfield Reeves
  • Amanda Williams
  • Dr. Doug Clarke
  • Jessica Stehouwer
  • Lowell Reynolds
  • Octavia Mingerink
  • Ryan Crawley