The Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami (MOCA) presented “Michael Richards: Are You Down?”―the first museum retrospective of the work of Michael Richards, exhibiting both his extensive sculpture and drawing practice. Of Jamaican and Costa Rican lineage, Richards was born in Brooklyn in 1963, raised in Kingston, and came of age between post-independence Jamaica and post-civil rights era America. Tragically, Richards passed away on September 11, 2001 while working in his Lower Manhattan Cultural Council World Views studio on the 92nd floor of World Trade Center, Tower One. At age 38, Richards was an emerging artist whose incisive aesthetic held immense promise to make him a leading figure in contemporary art. Flight and aviation were central themes for Richards as an exploration of freedom and escape, ascendance and descent. In light of the devastating circumstances that took Richards’ life, the airplanes and pilot imagery in his powerful artworks take on an added prescience. Richards used the language of metaphor to investigate racial inequity and the tension between assimilation and exclusion in his art. His artwork gestures towards both repression and reprieve from social injustices, and the simultaneous possibilities of uplift and downfall, often in the context of the historic and ongoing oppression of Black people.