Springfield Museums offers a series of lectures on African and African American art


SPRINGFIELD – An 8-part lecture series on African American art, visual arts and culture from 54 African countries will be offered in person and virtually at Springfield Museums this fall.

“Here +54: From the Smithsonian to Soweto, Arts of the African Americas and Africa,” presented by Kymberly S. Newberry, begins September 28 and ends November 16. Lectures are available in person or via Zoom from 6.30am. pm – 20 pm every week on Tuesday. The cost is $ 140 for non-members and $ 120 for members.

The series will alternate lectures and masterclasses that feature a discussion with an academic, art historian or curator, with an emphasis on a particular exhibition or genre of African-American or African cultural expression that reflects their scientific guidance and expertise.

Paige Moreau, who coordinates classes for the Museum School, which presents the series, met Newberry at the graduate school of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Moreau said she looked forward to “having the opportunity to engender a professional partnership, as well as nurture an old friendship,” with Newberry through this series. With Jeanne Fontaine, who heads the School of Museums, the three are developing the “Ici +54”.

Newberry said museums still failed to integrate African-American and African art.

“At a time when representation issues are so pressing, a recent survey of major American museums found that only 1.2% of artists in collections are African-American,” she said.

Moreau said the lecture series provides attendees with an opportunity to better understand and embrace the visual expression of African Americans and the African diaspora.

“All over the world, this remarkable art has been an agent of triumph and change,” she said.

Kay Simpson, president and CEO of Springfield Museums, said museums continue to welcome visitors for in-person events, but wish to welcome those who wish to participate from their homes.

“We are especially excited to share learning opportunities such as Kymberly Newberry’s lecture series on African American and African arts both in person and virtually, so that as many people as possible can access this important exploration of this rich and meaningful art history, ”she said. “Our museum school quickly switched to virtual, and then used hybrid presentations to ensure that access was not interrupted by the pandemic.”

The lecture series will include the following topics:

  • September 28 – Sir David Adjaye, Black Architects and National Museum of African American History and Culture
  • October 5 – Masterclass: Dr. Kimberly Juanita Brown discusses Carrie Mae Weems, Roaming, 2006
  • October 12 – Polaroid & Apartheid and the role of photography in the decolonization of West Africa
  • October 19 – Masterclass: Dr. Christa Clarke Discussions: The Gilded Age Revisited: Yinka Shonibare CBE at Newark Museum
  • October 26 – Black women in the works of impressionists and contemporary multimedia artist Mickalene Thomas
  • November 2 – Masterclass: Dr. Allen F. Roberts Discuss: “Brainsmithing”: The Art of Senegalese Artists Ndary Lô, Viyé Diba and Moussa Tine
  • November 9 – Seeing It Makes Me Sweat: Dilemmas in Conserving / Translating African Art in American Art Museums
  • November 16 – Masterclass: Dr James Smethurst discusses: The Black Arts Movement

To register, please visit: https://springfieldmuseums.org/program/54-smithsonian-soweto-arts-african-americas-africa/

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