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Faith Ringgold, in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia. Tar Beach 2 (detail), 1990. Acid dyes on bleached silk duppioni, and cotton. 65 x 65 inches (165.1 x 165.1 cm). Edition of 24. Photo credit: Aaron Igler. Faith Ringgold, in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia. Tar Beach 2, 1990. Acid dyes on bleached silk duppioni, and cotton. 65 x 65 inches (165.1 x 165.1 cm). Edition of 24. Photo credit: Aaron Igler.
Faith Ringgold, in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia. Tar Beach 2 (detail), 1990. Acid dyes on bleached silk duppioni, and cotton. 65 x 65 inches (165.1 x 165.1 cm). Edition of 24. Photo credit: Aaron Igler.
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Faith Ringgold, in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia. Tar Beach 2, 1990. Acid dyes on bleached silk duppioni, and cotton. 65 x 65 inches (165.1 x 165.1 cm). Edition of 24. Photo credit: Aaron Igler.
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Faith Ringgold

Faith Ringgold made her first quilt, Echoes of Harlem, with her mother, Madame Willi Posey, in 1980. She was inspired to pursue quiltmaking as a vehicle for her art after hearing her mother’s stories of their ancestors, who were slaves trained to make quilts on their plantation. By 1990, the year of her residency at the FWM, Ringgold had completed a second quilt, Who’s Afraid of Aunt Jemima?, her first story quilt incorporating both text and image. Her FWM quilt, Tar Beach, tells the story of a young African American girl who grows up in Harlem, spending her time outdoors on the rooftops of her urban landscape. The narrative is told through text and image, which are printed with dyes on silk duppioni. Ringgold chose a variety of decorative fabrics to border the quilts, making each quilt in the edition of 24 unique.

In 1991, Ringgold published Tar Beach as a children’s book (Crown Publishers). It has won over twenty awards, including the Caldecott Honor and the Coretta Scott King award for best illustrated children’s book in 1991. Ringgold has since gone on to write other children’s books, including Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky (Crown Publishers, 1992) and Dinner at Aunt Connie’s (Hyperion Books, 1993).

Bio
American, born 1930, lives in La Jolla, California, and Englewood, New Jersey
Faith Ringgold grew up in Harlem, and pursued her art studies in New York, earning BS and MA degrees in visual art from City College of New York in 1955 and 1959. A strong voice within a growing community of African American artists working in New York in the 1960s, Ringgold has continued to create artwork that overtly addresses political themes as well as works inspired by her interest in traditional handcraft and folklore. She has never limited her choice of media, and practiced as a painter, sculptor, performance artist, and writer. Ringgold had her first one-person show in 1967 (Spectrum Gallery), and numerous other exhibitions followed, including a major survey at The Studio Museum in Harlem (1984) and a 25-year retrospective that traveled nationally from 1990 to 1992. Ringgold has received eleven honorary doctoral degrees and many awards, including a Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship (1987). Since 1985, she has been professor of art at the University of California in San Diego.