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The Safety Patrol

A group of black children stand closely together, gazing out at the viewer. They wear brightly colored and patterened clothing made of African fabrics; one child stands in front of the others with his arms outstretched in a protective gesture, wearing a belt and sash that identify him as part of a school safety patrol.
© Bisa Butler

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  • A group of black children stand closely together, gazing out at the viewer. They wear brightly colored and patterened clothing made of African fabrics; one child stands in front of the others with his arms outstretched in a protective gesture, wearing a belt and sash that identify him as part of a school safety patrol.

Date:

2018

Artist:

Bisa Butler (American, born 1973)

About this artwork

The Safety Patrol considers the potential of seven children as future caretakers of the world. The boy in the center stands in front of his classmates, wearing a sash that signals his role helping other children safely cross the street. His outstretched arms reinforce his duty to lead and protect and his facial expression registers that he is poised and not afraid of what lies ahead. As the artist has noted, the letters OK printed diagonally on his shirt and the yellow eye on his left side simultaneously ward off evil forces and forecast that the children are prepared for the future and will be alright.

Status

On View, Gallery 215

Department

Textiles

Artist

Bisa Butler

Title

The Safety Patrol

Origin

New Jersey

Date

Made 2018

Medium

Cotton, wool, and chiffon; appliquéd and quilted

Dimensions

210.8 × 229 cm (83 × 90 in.)

Credit Line

Cavigga Family Trust Fund

Reference Number

2019.785

Copyright

© Bisa Butler

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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