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Mickalene Thomas

Celebrating the beauty, sexuality and power of Black women through collage, photography and film, Thomas’ bold works reshape ideas of the artist’s muse. A graduate of the Pratt Institute and Yale School of Art, her impactful collages harnessing rhinestones and enamel have made her one of America’s most in-demand contemporary artists. In 2021, her work 'Raquel Reclining Wearing Purple Jumpsuit' sold for over $1.8 million at Christie’s (more than three times its high estimate).

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Did you know?

Thomas’s first muse was her mother, Sandra Bush, a model set for super-stardom in the 1970s, who fell on hard times.

Country of Birth


Auction Record


Christie's New York, 'Racquel Reclining Wearing Purple Jumpsuit', 2021

Notable Collections

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, USA

MoMA, New York, USA

Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY, USA

National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C., USA

Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C., USA

Notable Exhibitions

Mickalene Thomas: Avec Monet, Musée National de l'Orangerie, Paris, FR, 2022-23

Mickalene Thomas: Femmes Noires, Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, USA, 2019

Mickalene Thomas: découverte, Baldwin Gallery, Aspen, USA, 2019

Mickalene Thomas: Do I Look Like a Lady?, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, USA, 2016

Muse: Mickalene Thomas Photography and tête-à-tête, Aperture Foundation, New York, USA, 2015

Mama Bush: One of a Kind Two, Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, JP, 2011

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