Revival of paintings on display at women's museum

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Photo -   Artist Faith Ringgold poses for a portrait in front of a painted self-portrait during a press preview of her exhibition, "American People, Black Light: Faith Ringgold’s Paintings of the 1960s" at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington on Wednesday, June 19, 2013. Ringgold explains her "confrontational art" _ vivid paintings whose themes of race, gender, class and civil rights were so intense that for years, no one would buy them. "I didn’t want people to be able to look, and look away, because a lot of people do that with art," Ringgold said. "I want them to look and see. I want to grab their eyes and hold them, because this is America." (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
Artist Faith Ringgold poses for a portrait in front of a painted self-portrait during a press preview of her exhibition, "American People, Black Light: Faith Ringgold’s Paintings of the 1960s" at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington on Wednesday, June 19, 2013. Ringgold explains her "confrontational art" _ vivid paintings whose themes of race, gender, class and civil rights were so intense that for years, no one would buy them. "I didn’t want people to be able to look, and look away, because a lot of people do that with art," Ringgold said. "I want them to look and see. I want to grab their eyes and hold them, because this is America." (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
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WASHINGTON (AP) — Faith Ringgold's "confrontational art" — a series of vivid paintings about race, gender, class and civil rights— is so intense that when she first offered the paintings four decades ago, no one would buy them.

But now those controversial works are enjoying a revival.

Forty-nine of Ringgold's early works go on display Friday at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington. The paintings are from the "American People" and "Black Light" collections she created in the 1960s and 1970s, as well as earlier works and political posters.

Ringgold says her goal was to grab the eyes of Americans and help them see themselves in the context of the tumultuous times they lived in. She kept the paintings from public view for more than 40 years.

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