FOR ALMOST FORTY YEARS, Art League Houston (ALH) has documented and honored Texas art history through their annual awards. This year, Dallas-based artist Vicki Meek is their 2021 Texas Artist of the Year. 

“I am thrilled to be recognized by Art League Houston as the 2021 Texas Artist of the Year and to join such an illustrious group of Texas artists. This honor is so special to me because it is being given by a Houston arts organization, the city that I consider my art home, and it allows me to show my work in a space I have only visited in the past,” Meek says in a statement. 

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Meek developed her work during the height of the Black Arts Movement in the 1970s and used her art as a way to make political statements. She cites the legendary American sculptor, Elizabeth Catlett as a major influence on her practice alongside other artists like Jacob Lawrence and Romare Bearden.

The honoree moved to Dallas, Texas in 1980 where she has lived and worked and as a nationally recognized artist, writer, curator and arts administrator. As a multidisciplinary artist, Meek investigates cultural memory and issues of identity within the African diaspora as a way to emphasize collective healing. 

Installation view of Vicki Meek's exhibition Stony the Road We Trod: A Shrine to Black America at the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, Texas. (2021)

Throughout 40 years of work in the arts, Meek has been commissioned for a number of public commissions in Dallas and won countless awards. Her retrospective exhibition Vicki Meek: 3 Decades of Social Commentary took place at the Houston Museum of African Culture in November 2019. Earlier this year, Meek’s Stony the Road We Trod: A Shrine to Black America at the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas paid tribute to the Black Lives Matter movement. The show was inspired by the Black national anthem “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing,” a tune of triumph and a pledge of unity. 

Art League Houston is celebrating Meek’s outstanding achievements with a solo exhibition entitled The Journey to Me which is slated to open in September. The show will feature three site-specific installations that map Meek’s artistic trajectory. 

Vicki Meek’s solo exhibition The Journey to Me is on view at Art League Houston from September 10, 2021-February 5, 2022. For more information, visit here. 

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