(American, b. 1975)
Conté crayon on Kraft paper
Sheet: 207.2 x 155.3 cm (81 9/16 x 61 1/8 in.)
Ruthe and Heinz Eppler Fund 2009.85
© Robert A Pruitt
The title of this drawing alludes to the band Rage Against the Machine, whose lyrics were inspired by revolutionary politics.
In this drawing Robert Pruitt depicts a woman dressed in costume from the 19th century, when slavery still flourished, but with contemporary tennis shoes peeking out from underneath her dress. She holds a long-handled hammer, a reference to the freed slave John Henry, who worked as a steel driver and became a legend when he won a race against a steam-powered hammer during the 1870s. In the same way that Henry overcame a machine, Pruitt's heroic figure suggests the destruction of a corrupt and inequitable system.
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