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African American Art: 20th Century Masterworks

Apr 6, 1998 – Jun 6, 1998
Shown in conjunction with the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and the national triennial meeting of the Arts Council of the African Studies Association. A large selection of painting, sculpture and graphic art by major African American artists of the 20th century. “African American Art: 20th Century Masterworks” displays a collection of work spanning multiple generations, artistic movements, and media which seeks to expand the traditional canon of art history. Some of the work represents Black life, but it all skillfully represents modern and contemporary art practices and ideals, placing previously underrepresented artists at the forefront of these movements. The first “Masterworks” show was held in 1993 at Michael Rosenfeld, and the tenth concluded in 2003, with numerous iterations of the series traveling to museums across the country; the Newcomb exhibition occurred following “African American Art: 20th Century Masterworks V.” This show of paintings, drawings, sculpture, photography, and collage aims to draw new attention to modern and contemporary Black artists, many of whom were left on the periphery of the art scene. “Masterworks” challenges long-held notions of the art historical canon, and opens up audiences to new interpretations of what it means to produce great art. The exhibition was accompanied by music and dance performances by local teenagers.Featuring: Charles Alston, Benny Andrews, Romare Bearden, Elizabeth Catlett, Eldzier Cortor, Harold Cousins, Beauford Delaney, Aaron Douglas, William Edmondson, Sam Gilliam, Palmer Hayden, Richard Hunt, Sargent Johnson, William H. Johnson, Jacob Lawrence, Hughie Lee-Smith, Norman Lewis, Hayward Oubre, Marion Perkins, Horace Pippin, Betye Saar, Bob Thompson, Bill Traylor, James VanDerZee, Charles White, Hale Woodruff. Organized by Nancy Corwin with the Michael Rosenfeld Gallery.

With accompanying lecture, "African-American Art Today" by Dr. Alvia J. Wardlaw, Curator of 20th century American Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston & Professor of Art History, Texas Southern University, Benny Andrews, Artist, New York and Willie Burch, Artist, New Orleans

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