In honor of Black History Month, Luxe goes beyond the canvas with three contemporary artists. Get to know Basil Kincaid as we showcase eight product picks that channel the lively colors and patterns of his meaningful quilt creations. #luxecelebratesblackhistory #diversityindesign
By creating and exploring various artforms, Basil Kincaid is on a quest for self-understanding in a culture that has quelled the Black experience. Kincaid comes from generations of female quilt makers, and years ago, dreamt of his grandmother standing in front of a house that was wrapped in a quilt. Shortly thereafter, he began sewing. These textural masterpieces honor a family tradition connecting him to his past and giving overdue recognition to those before him.
Edelweiss Tile / Price upon request / newravenna.com
Describe your foray into art.
I’ve been making art since before I knew what art was. I’d draw everywhere I went, including church. It’s been the one constant in my life aside from my family.
Kepner Lounge Chair / $2,775 / stickley.com
What mediums do you work within?
My mediums are many. I draw—drawing was my first love—I paint, I collage, I quilt, I perform. My medium shifts according to how I’m shifting. Each medium that I employ is a response to a sensation; I decide which medium will be the most accurate response to the sensation.
Swedish Kilim / From $3,500 / mansour.com
What led you to quilting?
Living in Ghana from 2014-2015 for a residency, I noticed how people there were connected to their family traditions in a way that we’re not here. It made me want to investigate my familial traditions. While there, I had a particularly profound dream of my grandmother standing in front of a house that was totally wrapped in quilt. I woke up from that dream and the next day I started quilting.
Fringes Bucket Bag / $2,100 / loewe.com
Expand on the ties between these quilts and your family’s past.
Quilting has been in my family for over seven generations. I am carrying on the tradition to keep it alive and to honor those women who didn’t get the recognition they deserved for their amazing works of art. They were never regarded as artists, and that bothers me.
Italian Velvet Patchwork Ottoman by Marian Paquette / $745 / choixhome.com
Give us the scoop on picking the pieces for each quilt.
I’m passionate about reusing and repurposing material. A lot of what you see in my work comes from donation banks, friends, family, sometimes thrift stores; a lot of the materials are my old clothes or personal materials. I enjoy using materials that have emotional significance to the people that donated them.
Illinois and Kansas Dinner Plate / $68 for four / sirensongcuriosities.com
You are open about moments of self-reflection that have urged you to practice critical social questioning. Expand on why that’s important to you.
The search for self-understanding, the necessity for self-definition and the ability to self-assert are imperative when your beingness and personhood are under constant scrutiny with an ill-fitting description by individuals who haven’t made an attempt to know me and institutional structures that are designed to subjugate me.
Cecil Table Light / $689 / originalbtc.com
Are there any artists or creatives who you cite as an inspiration to your work?
I have a number of artists in my life who inspire me, but I don’t cite them as inspirations to my work. They’re inspirations for their hustle, for the way they live, for the way they express themselves. I’m motivated by their perseverance and sensitivities to themselves. Some of those artists include: Kennedy Yanko, Nate Lewis, Stephen Hamilton, Yowshien Kuo, and Greg Breda to name a few friends. Aaron Douglas, the artists of Africobra, Alma Thomas, to name a few more historical influences.