Tim Rollins and K.O.S. A History

Tim Rollins and KOS at Lehmann Maupin in 2016 (courtesy Lehmann Maupin) Left to Right: Rick Savinon,  Robert Branch ,Tim Rollins , Angel Abreu  and Jorge Abreu 

In 1982, artist and teacher Tim Rollins created an after-school program in the South Bronx for his most dedicated students. The Art and Knowledge workshop soon morphed into Tim Rollins and the Kids of Survival (K.O.S.). Together, Rollins and K.O.S. developed a collaborative strategy that combined lessons in reading and writing with the production of impactful works of art. In a process, they called “jamming,” Rollins or a member of the collective would read selected texts aloud while other members drew, cut, ripped, painted onto pages of the text, relating the stories to their own experiences. What was manifested from their collaborations became a powerful body of work that can be seen today in over 120 museums and public collections worldwide including MoMA, The Tate Modern and The Art Institute of Chicago.