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Lockett's art sought to link momentous events with their humble residues.
Lockett's art sought to link momentous events with their humble residues. From the outset, these linkages operated through rhetorical tactics of indirection and through what has been called, apropos of African American culture, "obscuring the addressee" or "naming." With this strategy, Lockett frequently chose cataclysmic events of incontrovertible terror—the bombing of Hiroshima, the Holocaust, Ku Klux Klan violence (Smoke-Filled Sky)—through which he pointed at contemporary African American suffering and his unseen life.