Alteronce Gumby: What Makes a Monochrome Painting Good

Alina Cohen, Artsy, March 5, 2018

Article featuring Alteronce Gumby, Artsy, 5 May 2018:


Elsewhere in New York City, artist Alteronce Gumby hopes to “redefine color as shade,” as he describes it to Artsy. He paints heavily layered monochromes with his hands, and mixes his own black paints by combining various shades together. “All of that adds to the experience of how we build our identities or our personalities,” he says. Wakanda (2017), for example, references the fictional African nation now trending on Twitter thanks to Black Panther (it’s the movie’s predominant setting). Upon first glance, the painting is an all-black monochrome. Look closer, and pinks, blues, and greens begin to appear. 
Gumby’s work suggests that monochromatic painting will continue to evolve as artists grapple with ever-changing aesthetic, social, and autobiographical issues. “I think what makes a monochrome painting good is what makes any painting good,” he says. “Does it change the way I see the world around me?”
Text: Alina Cohen