Kerry James Marshall created comic strip with black characters to show “it can be done”


Undaunted by the lack of black comic characters he saw as a child, African-American artist Kerry James Marshall created a few for the 57th Carnegie International

When Kerry James Marshall was a young African-American boy growing up in South Central Los Angeles, he devoured the comic strips that used to come with the newspaper, but he noticed that there were no characters who looked like him. Marshall decided to take matters into his own hands several decades later for the 1999/2000 Carnegie International, when he debuted a comic strip with three different narratives—Rythm Mastr, P-Van, and On The Stroll—in the display cases of the Carnegie Museum of Art’s Treasure Room. “The idea was when I grew up, you never saw black characters in daily comic strips in the…

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