Fred Wilson - Untitled
American, b.1954
Untitled, 2003
Dye coupler print, 20 x 24 inches
Edition 37/125
MIT List Visual Arts Center

Gift of William J. Lutz and Karen Wicklund Lutz (MBA '78)

A MacArthur Fellow, Wilson is well known internationally for a body of work that thoughtfully addresses complex issues of race and ethnicity, and the figures and lives lived at the margins of history. In his works, he draws upon photography, video, audio recordings, and sculpture for inspiration. He has used historic artifacts, museum collections and feature films as the means to animate history and stimulate dialogue, particularly in multi-media installations that have critiqued the role of the museum as a public institution.

Fred Wilson was selected to represent the United States at the 50th Venice Biennale that was held the summer of 2003. In this untitled color photograph, which was published upon the occasion of the 2003 Venice Biennale, Wilson superimposes a transparent image of a turbaned North African Negro upon a period image of Venice and its great lagoon. Combining photographic representations of painting and sculpture, Wilson comments upon the reciprocal relationship between wealth and servitude. In an ironic note, the Blackamoor lackey dominates the great city of commerce, made prosperous, in part, by the support of its enslaved classes.