Renowed artist Kara Walker is hoping to draw attention to the slave trade with a new sculpture of “Mammy”. The piece is called A Subtletly, and is 75ft long and 35ft high and 26ft wide, and serves as a cultural critique on the history of slavery.


According to The Art Newspaper,  A Subtletly is mostly made out of sugar and comprises a series of figures, including 15 servants bearing empty baskets and bananas. These boyish slaves are moving towards a giantess at the centre of the piece, naked except for a Black Mammie headscarf. Her sphinx-like physique is exaggeratedly feminine. “I was thinking about sugar and the associations with desire,” explains the artist.

The piece is currently on display at the Domino Sugar Factory in Brooklyn. A Subtlety opened on Saturday and runs until 6 July.  The hours are  Fridays 4pm-8pm; and  Saturdays and Sundays 12pm-6pm.

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  • From chains to change

    When I see a statue of a Mammy, I cant help but wonder how many mf’s she poisoned, or how many nites massa ate glass,bm gravy or drank suga urine lemonade….Im just sayin Big UP Mammy-shoot! They should of built you in mount everest dam it!

  • Mignon Ariel King

    What a relief to hear sisters not in love with this artist, thinking she’s at the very least stuck in another time. I thought it was just me wondering what year this is and if there is an “Us” in her work.

  • Cheryl Roshak

    I have followed some of Kara Walker’s work over the years and have been taken with her finely cut narrative silhouettes that though the subject matter is not always pleasant the medium is delightful. An ironic juxtaposition is at play.

    However the overwhelming sugar figure in white, symbolizing the slavery of black women and the stereotypical “Mammy” in exaggerated form is a far cry from the elegant, symbolic Egyptian Sphynx or the mqrvelous Niki de Saint Phalle’s “Mammy” where you actually enter into through the vagina and has lasted for decades, Walker;s sugar coated white “Mammy” is not long for this world. I applaude that decision. Is the artist mocking her feminine historical roots or making such a grotesque image of her past, in either case it is hard to accept.

  • Pingback: Artist Kara Walker Creates World’s Largest ”Mammy” Statue To Raise Awareness Of Slavery | Clutch Magazine | innerstanding isness()

  • mdottwo

    Kara Walker’s ill-conceived gigantic Mammy exhibit fulfills my
    prediction that it would hold the image of black women up for further
    worldwide ridicule. View Instagram photos of people sexually mocking the
    exhibit. http://news.artnet.com/art-wor