Colony Little is a Los Angeles-based writer and the founder of Culture Shock Art, a site dedicated to contemporary art and the synergies between art, music and design that shape Los Angeles. She started Culture Shock Art in 2010 as a creative outlet from her career in the insurance industry. She loved the street art she saw every day while driving through Echo Park on the way to work, and she started to document some of the artwork she saw.
Since then, Culture Shock Art has evolved to amplify the artists of color who often get left out of the dialogue on contemporary art. Colony covers the art world from an outsider’s perspective with a goal of making contemporary art relatable and accessible. “Art writers tend to be academic, peppering their writing with tons of art speak,” she says. “I try to relate what I see in museums and galleries to something closer to home like pop culture or a historical reference. My goal is to chip away at some of the artificial barriers of exclusivity the art world loves to cultivate.”
Inclusion has always been important to her, and Colony’s “Artist a Day Challenge” during Black History Month exemplifies this. What started as a personal writing challenge has evolved into an exciting look at established and upcoming black artists whose stories are often overlooked. She says, “One of my mentors encouraged me to re-visit some of the posts from 2017 to turn into a long form essay on black art co-ops in the 1960’s. As a concept, I love the idea of creative collectives where artists, musicians, designers and writers come together to support one another’s work. We need more of them now!”
Colony is currently on a career sabbatical and has been using this time to build upon her art writing portfolio. As her leave winds down, she will continue to write and keep Culture Shock Art going. Connect with Colony on Twitter and Instagram, and read more of her art writing below.
- Imagining the Portraits of African-American Women.., Hyperallergic, April 25, 2017
- Shotgun Review, Hammer Projects: Kevin Beasley, Daily Serving, March 17, 2017
- Hammer Projects: Simone Leigh, Arts.Black, October, 2016
- Shotgun Review, Hammer Projects: Simone Leigh, Daily Serving, October 7, 2016
- Collector Scoop: Colony Little, Crusade for Art, July 21, 2016
- The Provocation of Ambiguity and Agency, Arts.Black, June, 2016