Hank Willis Thomas - Photographs New York Wednesday, October 12, 2022 | Phillips

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  • "I started thinking about logos as our generation’s hieroglyphs. They can be embedded with so much meaning, and I really wanted to play off that."
    —Hank Willis Thomas

     In his Branded series, Hank Willis Thomas utilizes the visual language of advertising to interrogate how brands have exploited Black American culture to sell products, and frequently upheld racist stereotypes in the process. Evidenced in An Unidentified Jamaican Boy Uses the Puma H Street Running Shoe to Run for his Freedom, by appropriating commercial imagery Thomas ruminates on how corporations render Black male identities as inherently tied to athleticism – and as such, the deeply troubling history of linking Black male bodies to strenuous labor.

    • Provenance

      Jack Shainman Gallery, New York


An Unidentified Jamaican Boy Uses the Puma H Street Running Shoe to Run for His Freedom

Chromogenic print.
42 x 56 in. (106.7 x 142.2 cm)
Overall 51 x 65 in. (129.5 x 165.1 cm)

Signed in ink, printed title, date and number 4/5 on a gallery label accompanying the print.

Full Cataloguing

$10,000 - 15,000 

Sold for $11,970

Contact Specialist

Sarah Krueger
Head of Department, Photographs, New York

Vanessa Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs and Deputy Chairwoman, Americas


New York Auction 12 October 2022