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Past Event

The American Struggle with Derrick Adams, Bethany Collins & Hank Willis Thomas

Mar 4 2021

Seattle Art Museum


5 PM – 6 PM

Join us for an online conversation in anticipation of the opening of Jacob Lawrence: The American Struggle at the Seattle Art Museum. Contemporary artists Derrick Adams, Bethany Collins, and Hank Willis Thomas engage themes such as democracy, justice, truth, and the politics of inclusion in their artworks.

The artists will discuss their artistic practices while offering perspective on the continued timeliness of Jacob Lawrence’s Struggle series.

About the artists

Derrick Adams was born in Baltimore, MD in 1970 and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. His work spans painting, collage, sculpture, performance, video, and sound installations. He received his MFA from Columbia University, BFA from Pratt Institute, and is an alumni of the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program. He is a recipient of a Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Residency, Gordon Parks Foundation Fellowship, Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize, and Louis Comfort Tiffany Award.

Bethany Collins (American, b. 1984) is a multidisciplinary artist whose conceptually driven work is fueled by a critical exploration of how race and language interact. Collins’s works have been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions nationwide, including the Studio Museum in Harlem, the High Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, and the Birmingham Museum of Art. Collins has been recognized as an Artist-in-Residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem and was awarded the Hudgens Prize in 2015.

Hank Willis Thomas (b. 1976, Plainfield, NJ; lives and works in Brooklyn, NY) is a conceptual artist working primarily with themes related to perspective, identity, commodity, media, and popular culture. His work has been exhibited throughout the United States and abroad including the International Center of Photography, New York; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain; Musée du quai Branly, Paris; Hong Kong Arts Centre, Hong Kong, and the Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Netherlands.

Once you have completed your registration, you will receive an email with the link to connect to the webinar. If you have any questions please reach out to us at or call us at 206.654.3210, 10 am–5 pm, Monday through Friday.

Jacob Lawrence: The American Struggle is organized by the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts. This project is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Presenting Sponsor


Lead Sponsor


Supporting Sponsor

Generous Support
Bette and David Sprague Exhibition Endowment

Photo: Christopher Garcia Valle. Photo by: Chris Edward, Courtesy of the artist and PATRON Gallery, Chicago. Photo: Andrea Blanch

Seattle Art Museum acknowledges that we are on the traditional homelands of the Duwamish and the customary territories of the Suquamish and Muckleshoot Peoples. As a cultural and educational institution, we honor our ongoing connection to these communities past, present, and future. We also acknowledge the urban Native peoples from many Nations who call Seattle their home.