Artist Kara Walker Will Premiere New Work at England’s Tate Modern as the 2019 Hyundai Commission

Kara Walker attends the The 21st Annual Webby Awards on May 15, 2017 in New York City.
Kara Walker attends the The 21st Annual Webby Awards on May 15, 2017 in New York City.
Photo: Jason Kempin (Getty Images for Webby Awards)

She’s stunned audiences with her unflinching artistic analyses of antebellum slavery and post-colonial black iconography, and now, artist Kara Walker is bringing her bold, always conversational and sometimes controversial visions to Britain’s renowned Tate Modern museum, courtesy of Hyundai.


As reported by Dazed Digital:

The 2019 Hyundai Commission for the Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall has been announced as American artist Kara Walker. The artist is renowned for her study of social issues like race, gender, sexuality, and violence through a mixed media lens of sculptural installations, prints, shadow puppets, and drawings. Her most well-known works are black paper silhouettes that explore the history of slavery from America’s Antebellum South region.

Memorably, Walker’s last large-scale installation was 2014’s “A Subtlety,” which merged the “Mammy” archetype with the ancient Egyptian Sphinx in a massive sculpture coated in sugar and temporarily housed in the abandoned Domino Sugar Refinery in Brooklyn, N.Y. Subsequently, she showed at the 2015 Venice Biennale, and later staged 2017’s “The Katastwóf Karavan,” which Dazed reports “explored the African-American experience through song.”

While no details have been given about Walker’s upcoming site-specific installation, via a statement, the Tate lauds their 2019 selection.

“Kara Walker fearlessly tackles some of the most complex issues we face today,” said Frances Morris, Director of Tate Modern. “Her work addresses history and identity with a powerful directness, but also with great understanding, nuance and wit. Seeing her respond to the industrial scale of the Turbine Hall—and the wider context of London and British history—is a hugely exciting proposition.”

Kara Walker’s Hyundai Commission will be on display at the Turbine Hall in the Tate Modern in London, England from Oct. 5, 2019, to April 5, 2020.

Maiysha Kai is managing editor of The Glow Up, host of The Root Presents: It's Lit! podcast and Big Beauty Tuesdays, and your average Grammy-nominated goddess next door. May I borrow some sugar?



This is very exciting along with Julie Mehretu; Kara is one of my favorite artists. I attended The Un-Private Collection” talk series with Ava Duvernay, and it was riveting. If Great Brittain has not melted down from Brexit, this will be my excuse to plan a trip to London for my birthday!