Iago’s Mirror, 2009
Mirrors have always held an element of mystery, both reflecting and distorting the image. Iago’s Mirror is an example of Fred Wilson’s interest in investigating the racial implications of color and the African Diaspora in a global context.
Working in the tradition of the glassmakers of Venice, where there was a significant black African presence beginning in the Renaissance, the artist has reversed the tradition by painting the glass black instead of silvering it. The title refers to the duplicitous character who ensnares Shakespeare’s Othello, perhaps the most famous black figure in English literature.
Image via Brooklyn Museum