To Conserve a Legacy: American Art from Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Overview

Many of this nation's Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have amassed significant collections of American art and founded galleries and museums on their campuses.

These collections provide a rich resource for the study of African American art, yet many also possess a diverse array of nineteenth- and twentieth-century American art. To Conserve a Legacy documents an outstanding sampling of paintings, prints, drawings, photographs, and sculptures owned by Clark ...

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Overview

Many of this nation's Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have amassed significant collections of American art and founded galleries and museums on their campuses.

These collections provide a rich resource for the study of African American art, yet many also possess a diverse array of nineteenth- and twentieth-century American art. To Conserve a Legacy documents an outstanding sampling of paintings, prints, drawings, photographs, and sculptures owned by Clark Atlanta University, Fisk University, Hampton University, Howard University, North CarolinaCentral University, and Tuskegee University.This book serves as the catalog for a major exhibition and conservation project organized by the Addison Gallery of American Art and The Studio Museum inHarlem, in association with the Williamstown Art Conservation Center and the six participatingHBCUs. The book contains a profile of each university collection, color reproductions of many artworks included in the exhibition, biographical information on all the represented artists, and documentation of the conservation and care practices helping to preserve the art for future generations.Two major essays place the HBCU art collections and this collaborative project in a historical context and develop six themes around which the exhibition was organized: Forever Free: Emancipation Visualized; The First Americans; Training the Head, the Hand, and the Heart; TheAmerican Portrait Gallery; American Expressionism; and Modern Lives, Modern Impulses. The artists include Romare Bearden, John Biggers, Elizabeth Catlett, Charles Demuth, Arthur Dove, MarsdenHartley, William H. Johnson, Jacob Lawrence, Edmonia Lewis, Archibald Motley, Georgia O'Keeffe,Horace Pippin, P. H. Polk, Alfred Stieglitz, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Doris Ulmann, Carl Van Vechten,Thomas Waterman, James Weeks, Charles White, and many others. The book also contains forty-two entry essays by American scholars on many of the individual artworks.The exhibition was co-curated byRichard Powell, Chairman of the Art and Art History Department at Duke University, and JockReynolds, Director of the Yale University Art Gallery.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
The works in this companion to a traveling exhibition are drawn from collections of American art held by six of the oldest, most prestigious historically black universities Clark Atlanta, Fisk, Hampton, Howard, North Carolina Central, and Tuskegee. The exhibition proclaims the importance of these hitherto little-known collections, which consist primarily of works by major and minor 19th- and 20th-century African American artists, as well as such well-known modernists as Hartley and O'Keeffe. The text consists of an anthology of essays that discuss the development of the exhibition, the history of the collections, and related conservation issues. Following is an alphabetically arranged biographical catalog of artists featured in the exhibition. The scholarly tone of much of the writing and the emphasis on academic issues will make this somewhat challenging for the general public, but this important book brings to light notable collections that deserve more attention. Highly recommended for academic art libraries.--Eugene C. Burt, Art Inst. of Seattle Lib. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262661515
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 4/9/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 8.60 (w) x 11.80 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 9
Introduction 11
Profiles of the Participating Historically Black Colleges and Universities 18
Clark Atlanta University Art Galleries, Clark Atlanta University, Atlanta, Georgia 18
Fisk University Galleries and Collections, Fisk University, Nashville, Tennessee 20
Hampton University Museum, Hampton University, Hampton, Virginia 22
Howard University Gallery of Art, Howard University, Washington, D.C. 24
North Carolina Central University Art Museum, North Carolina Central University, Durham, North Carolina 26
Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama 28
Conserving a Legacy: Forging a Partnership 31
To Conserve a Legacy: American Art from Historically Black Colleges and Universities 103
Conservation and Photographic Archives 144
Painters Painting, Conservators Conserving: The Laying on of Many Hands 146
Lux, Lies, and Compromise: The Politics of Light Exposure 150
Preserving the Cyanotype: Unlimited Access and Exhibition through Digital Image Surrogates 154
Laurel and Hardship: The Tales of Two Picture Frames 156
The Hampton Camera Club 159
Chronicling Tuskegee in Photographs: A Simple Version 164
Conservation Directions for Sculpture: Cleaning and Compensation of Edmonia Lewis's The Old Arrow Maker and His Daughter 166
Contributors 167
Exhibition Checklist and Catalogue 168
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