Robert and Elaine Stein Galleries

Kris Graves: Truth & Ruin

The Murder of Michael Brown, Ferguson, Missouri, 2016
Academic Year: 
Monday, October 18 to Friday, December 3, 2021
Robert and Elaine Stein Galleries


Artist Talk with Kris Graves and Opening Reception : Thursday, Oct. 21,  6 p.m.

Featured Speaker and Closing Reception: Thursday, Dec. 2,  11:30 a.m.

Alex Zamalin: Black Political Thought and Antiracism: The Civic Radical Tradition

Dr. Alex Zamalin Virtual Lecture

RSVP for Dr. Zamalin Viewing Party


The Robert and Elaine Stein Galleries at Wright State University are excited to share the work of Kris Graves in a solo exhibition of photographs titled Truth & Ruin from October 18 to December 3, 2021.  An artist talk will be held on Thursday, October 21 at 6:00pm in the gallery, with a reception to follow.

Kris Graves masterfully utilizes landscape and portrait photography to create a visual dialogue about the representation of Black people within the vast span of systemic racism in our culture.  Graves’ images have the power to cut through divisive rhetoric and compel viewers to reflect on longstanding issues plaguing our own communities and society at large, such as police violence against people of color and the dismantling and re-envisioning of racist monuments. The exhibition includes work from several different series, including The Testament Project, an exploration of the contemporary Black experience in America.  “More often than not,” Graves says, “Black people are portrayed in the extreme—either as very rich or very poor, they are demonized, infantilized, ridiculed, idolized or hyper-sexualized; and within the art canon there is a noticeable scarcity of Black representation.” In this vibrant series, subjects of Graves’ portraits are empowered through their active participation. Arranging the richly hued portraits in a grid, Graves describes these photographs as emphasizing the individuality of the subjects in addition to their blackness. This also creates a space for the viewer to reflect on the depth of racism in America. 

Based in New York and London, Graves has been published and exhibited globally, including the National Portrait Gallery in London, and Aperture Gallery, New York, among others. Permanent collections include the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Schomburg Center, Whitney Museum, Guggenheim Museum, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Brooklyn Museum, and The Wedge Collection, Toronto, amongst others.

Alex Zamalin is an associate professor of political science and the director of the African American Studies Program at the University of Detroit Mercy. His areas of expertise include African American political thought, American politics, and political theory. He is the author of several books including Antiracism: An Introduction, and Against Civility: The Hidden Racism in Our Obsession with Civility. 

Zamalin’s lecture will be an online event with a live Q&A session. There will be a viewing party and reception in the Stein Galleries with complimentary boxed lunches. Limited space. Please use the link to rsvp or to attend the lecture remotely. Dr. Alex Zamalin Lecture

The Robert and Elaine Stein Galleries are free and open to the public on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm, Wednesdays and Fridays from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm, and on Saturdays from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm.

Visitor parking areas on campus are free, and parking at the Creative Arts Center is unrestricted on weekends. A dedicated parking space for galleries patrons is available in Lot 13. For more information, please contact the galleries at (937) 775-2978 or visit 

Support provided by FotoFocus.




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