Boston University Art Galleries presents a career-spanning look at the work of New York-based visual artist and graphic designer Cey Adams in CEY ADAMS, DEPARTURE: 40 Years of Art and Design, a retrospective on view through December 11 at Boston University Faye G., Jo, and James Stone Gallery. Featuring more than 60 pieces that demonstrate the breadth of Adams’s work through photography archives, mixed media collage, paintings, textiles, fashion, street art, contemporary fine art, and more, this exhibition provides a visual timeline of artistic evolution.

Curated by Liza Quiñonez of Street Theory, the first solo retrospective exhibition for Cey Adams celebrates his practice and transformative role in multiple cultural art and music movements over the last four decades. The chronological work on display begins in the 1970s, when he began to hone his art skills by painting graffiti on the streets and trains of New York City.

As street art begins to leak into the city’s high-end galleries, the show follows Adams to his work as founding Creative Director for Def Jam Recordings, where he gave visual life to the Hip-Hop movement and created visual identities, album covers, logos, and advertising campaigns for musical giants like Run DMC, Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Public Enemy, Notorious B.I.G., Maroon 5, and Jay-Z. An installation featuring more than 50 album covers conceived and designed by Adams will showcase this part of his career before exploring his studio practice.

The exhibition also spotlights Adams’s collaborations with Levi’s® Eureka Innovation Lab and Mattel Creations. It is on view now through December 11, 2022, at Boston University Faye G., Jo, and James Stone Gallery.

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