Super Black

An Arts Council Collection National Partners Programme Exhibition

In the first of its brand-new series of Arts Council Collection National Partner exhibitions, Firstsite is staging Super Black, an exhibition exploring the complex questions of identity and the experiences of black people living in Britain today.

Led by people from Essex’s black community, the exhibition presents artworks from the Arts Council Collection, alongside new work by Southend-based artist, Elsa James, and objects from the Vanley Burke Archive.

In creating the exhibition, Elsa has been joined by Lawrence Walker, Chair of Black History Month Colchester, Rachel Walton, co-founder of African Families in the UK (AFiUK), and Simone McLean and Yasmin Carr, of Colchester-based S&S Caribbean Café.

The artworks they have chosen for the exhibition reflect the group’s discussions, consisting of pieces that they feel give an expression of black consciousness, and the representation of black artists in galleries across the UK.

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Artist Profile: Vanley Burke

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Curating Super Black

Find out more about the creation of Super Black from the exhibition’s curatorial team as they discuss their involvement in the project as well as their hopes for the exhibition's reception at Firstsite.

The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With more than 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyond. This website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.