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Shaunté Gates

DEPICTING Dick Gregory

“We are flooded with information in the digital age. How do you navigate information overload and counter myths with our individual true stories?

This piece is a reflective parallel of Dick Gregory’s voice as comedian and activist. He masterfully harmonized the two, making his messages effective on either platform. Gregory’s success/common denominator was his truthfulness. In modern Western society—built on divisiveness that prevails because of the perpetuation of myths—our resilience through time is the overarching theme.”— Shaunté Gates

A collage with a man seated in a street, with the main focal point being a bunch of bright red roses.
Light Side Dark Side [Dick Gregory], 2018. Shaunté Gates. Courtesy of the artist.


Shaunté Gates

(b. 1979) Washington D.C. native Shaunté Gates creates work that aims to capture the state of semi-consciousness—a blend of reality and fantasy. To prepare, he writes and gathers notes to expand on his observations. The notes begin to revolve around a concept, and a blueprint emerges. Gates incorporates subtle and fleeting elements as he builds his work. Some pieces expose the frenzy and momentum of a dream, while others dwell in the pain of stillness.

A black & white photo of a bearded African American man, walking in the midst of a crowd in a street. The man is wearing a hat, a checkered shirt & pants, and a coat with a peace medal hanging on one shoulder, and he is holding flowers in one hand.

Dick Gregory - 1968 Rally NYC, 1968. Anthony Barboza. Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, © Anthony Barboza.

Man of Change

Dick Gregory

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