Artists in Dialogue | Mark Francis & YoYo Lander

Artists in Dialogue | Mark Francis & YoYo Lander

Artists Mark Francis and YoYo Lander discuss their shared dedication to exploring the beauty and multiplicity of Black subjects through portraiture. 

With insight into the interior lives of their subjects, Francis and Lander offer new perspectives on contemporary figurative art. Francis’s detailed, mixed-media drawings exhibit authenticity and celebration, shedding light on the identity of his subjects and his own sense of self. Lander’s interest in the essence of humanity through body language offers context to the experiences of the portrayed figures, rendered through pieces of stained watercolor paper.

Plan Your Visit This program is free, with seating on a first-come, first-served basis in Lynn Wyatt Theater, located in the Kinder Building—see a map. On Thursdays, the Museum is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. with free general admission.

Safety Guidelines In the interest of your personal safety and community health, please observe all precautions set forth by the MFAH—learn more here.

About the Artists (pictured in slideshow)
• As a multidisciplinary artist, Mark Francis focuses primarily on the perception and intimate knowledge of oneself and others beyond superficiality. He grew up in the Alief area of Houston and seeks to show the dynamism of his community in order to create a more holistic view of his subjects. Francis is an art educator and an MFA candidate at the University of Houston’s Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts.
• In her collages, YoYo Lander celebrates the beauty, strength, and vulnerability of Black people. Layering snippets of stained watercolor paper, the Los Angeles–based artist works from photographs and carefully renders her subjects’ body language to provide additional context and an alternative to negative narratives around Blackness. Lander studied communications at Howard University before completing her MFA at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Learning and Interpretation programs receive generous funding from the Jerold B. Katz Foundation; H-E-B; MD Anderson Cancer Center; Institute of Museum and Library Services; The Brown Foundation, Inc.; Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo; Sterling-Turner Foundation; Susan Vaughan Foundation; and additional generous donors.


Nancy and Rich Kinder Building
5500 Main Street
Houston, TX 77004
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