Houston Artists Explore Controversy Surrounding Critical Race Theory Being Taught in Schools

A group of artists came together for a new exhibit aimed at exploring Critical Race Theory (CRT) and its abandonment in America’s school system.

Created by the non-profit Project Row Houses (PRH), the exhibit is part of the organization’s fifty-third Artist Round and is titled The Curious Case of Critical Race – Theory? Curated by Danielle Burns-Wilson, the exhibit opened on March 12, 2022, and will remain on display until June 5th.

Pieces in the presentation show artist interpretations of how and why CRT escaped the country’s education system and has become a topic of heated debates among conservative and liberal pundits.

“Art in and of itself is powerful,” artist Adam W. McKinney told the Houston Chronicle. “And as artists, we get to trust its power to make the connections it needs to make in the world.”

CRT was formulated in the 1970s by legal scholars looking for an analytical framework designed for graduate-level discourse on the racial disparities in America that lead to different experiences for people based on race, class, and gender.

The notion of CRT was to get people to understand how racism isn’t just the thoughts and ideas of certain individuals but is a structural and systematic practice deep-rooted in American culture.

Artists included in the exhibit are Leah Gipson, David-Jeremiah, Adam W. McKinney, Tammie Rubin, Bradley Ward, and ROUX, a collective comprised of Rabéa Ballin, Ann Johnson, Delita Martin, and Lovie Olivia.

“In this installation, visitors are met with thought-provoking illustrations, questions, and answers with the aim of quelling curiosity about CRT’s past, present, and purpose,” Project Row Houses captioned an Instagram post.

“In visiting the Education house, guests walk away with a deeper understanding of CRT, and therefore, are better equipped to engage with the remaining featured art houses and beyond.”