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Angela Davis–Seize the Time

October 7, 2022-June 18, 2023 | Great Hall

Angela Davis — Seize the Time is an exhibition focused on Davis and her image. Organized in partnership with the Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University, the exhibition provides a compelling and layered narrative of Davis’s journey. Using the Angela Davis Archive in Oakland as both the heart of the exhibition and a source, visitors are given the opportunity to investigate how we remember, preserve, and activate radical Black history, while also allowing us to re-imagine the construction of the image of Davis as an icon of American Black radical resistance, female empowerment, and a threat to the white patriarchal status quo.

Beyond the archive and popular culture references, the exhibition positions Angela Davis as a continuing touchstone for contemporary artists referencing mass incarceration, Black Lives Matter, and economic disenfranchisement. Contemporary artworks assert Davis’s significance as a Black feminism intellectual and engage with her as a historical participant in a larger narrative, not simply as an unmoored image of radical chic. 

This exhibition has been extended and will now be on view through June 18 – don’t miss it!

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Must-see this fall!

The New York Times

The Oakland Museum of California strikes again with another compelling exhibit that’s as timely and poignant as it is historical. Tapping the Angela Davis Archive, OMCA holds a mirror up to the memory and preservation of radical Black history but also portrays Davis not just as an icon of the resistance and female empowerment of yore but as part of a broader narrative that is ongoing today.





A Question of Memory – Interview with Angela Davis at OMCA

Angela Davis timeline
Angela Davis–Seize the Time Conversation Guide for Students

Angela Davis — Seize the Time is organized by the Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University. This project is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Grant funding has been provided by the Middlesex County Board of County Commissioners through a grant award from the Middlesex County Cultural and Arts Trust Fund. Additional support is provided by Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Endowment, Voorhees Family Endowment, Estate of Regina Heldrich, and donors to the Zimmerli’s Major Exhibitions Fund: James and Kathrin Bergin, Alvin and Joyce Glasgold, and Sundaa and Randy Jones.

Support for the Oakland Museum of California presentation of this exhibition is provided by Nia Impact Capital.

*Header image: Stephen Shames, November 12, 1969—Oakland, California, USA: Angela Davis speaks in DeFremery Park at a Free Huey rally, 1969, printed 2020. Gelatin silver print. ©2020, Stephen Shames / Polaris Images