(Atlanta) “With Drawn Arms: Glenn Kaino and Tommie Smith”

5 pictures captured while exploring “With Drawn Arms: Glenn Kaino and Tommie Smith” at Atlanta’s High Museum of Art.

The entire exhibition is housed in 4 rooms. Images 1-4 were photographed in the temporary exhibit room labeled the Tommie Smith Archives. Tommie Smith and wife Delois, are said to have amassed and archived thousands of artifacts related to his life and career. The High Museum currently has on display a selection of photographs, news clippings, awards, and other material culture.

The Tommie Smith Archives is dedicated to artifacts while the rest of the exhibit features the work of conceptual artist, Glenn Kaino. Each of Kaino’s designs are inspired by Tommie Smith, the living legend.

Image 1: commemorative item from 1968 Mexico City Olympics.

Image 2: Published letter written by Shirley Graham DuBois, addressed to Tommie Smith. Mrs. DuBois was the wife of W.E.B. DuBois. The letter was printed with her permission in a publication entitled The Black Panther.

Image 3: Track and Field equipment.

Image 4: Tommie Smith achieving a world record title during his time at San Jose State University.

Image 5: The Bridge a conceptual piece created by Glenn Kaino. The 100 foot serpentine bridge is comprised of gold painted casts of Tommie Smith’s arm. There is a great amount of symbolism in this piece including it representing a “path connected to the past that leads forward to the present.”

National Museum of African American History and Culture Announces “Walk-Up Weekdays” January & February

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National Museum of African American History and Culture Announces 
Walk-Up Weekdays in January and February

            The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture has announced Walk-Up Weekdays in January and February. Individuals may enter the museum on a first-come, first-served basis Monday through Friday for the months of January and February 2019. Timed-entry passes for individuals will only be required on Saturdays and Sundays. Walk-up entry on weekdays is a as part of a continuing pilot to provide visitors unfettered access to the museum.

On Wednesday, Nov. 7, at 9 a.m. ET, the museum will distribute advance timed-entry passes for Saturdays and Sundays Feb. 2 and 3, 9 and 10, 16 and 17 and 23 and 24. Walk-Up Weekdays will continue in February 2019 and timed passes will not be distributed for weekdays (Mondays–Fridays). Individuals may enter the museum on a first-come, first-served basis on weekdays in February. Same-day online and walk-up passes will not be available nor necessary on weekdays in February. Group passes are required every day for groups of 10 or more. Timed passes for January have already been distributed and will be required only on Saturdays and Sundays in January.

Timed passes for every day in November and December have already been distributed. The options for visitors are same-day online passes and walk-up passes that will be available most afternoons in November and December.

To access timed passes visit nmaahc.si.edu/passes or call 844-750-3012.

About the National Museum of African American History and Culture  

            The National Museum of African American History and Culture has welcomed more than 4.5 million visitors since opening Sept. 24, 2016, on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Occupying a prominent location next to the Washington Monument, the nearly 400,000-square-foot museum is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive cultural destination devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American story and its impact on American and world history. For more information about the museum, visit nmaahc.si.edu, follow @NMAAHC on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat—or call Smithsonian information at (202) 633-1000.

Atlanta Trip to St. Helena Island, South Carolina’s Penn Center

A few photographs from last weekend’s trip to St. Helena Island, South Carolina. The island has been home to the Penn Center (originally Penn School) since 1862. The Penn Center hosted their 36th Annual Heritage Days Celebration November 8 – November 11, 2018.

The 1954-1968 Civil Rights Movement, Abolitionism, U.S. Civil War, and Gullah-Geechee Heritage can all be examined through the lens of the Penn Center. Book title “Penn Center: A History Preserved” is a good way to learn about the history that has taken place at and around the cultural institution.

With Drawn Arms: High Museum of Art, Atlanta

[photo courtesy of the Kavi Gupta Gallery/Glenn Kaino/High Museum of Art]

Visiting Atlanta’s High Museum of Art, next week. Going to check out “With Drawn Arms”

The temporary exhibit will be on view until February 3rd, 2019.

Have you seen it yet? Share your thoughts.

Museum Merchandise Monday: Lucy Craft Laney Museum and Conference Center

This #MuseumMerchandiseMonday is dedicated to Augusta, Georgia’s Lucy Craft Laney Museum of Black History & Conference Center. Pictured are a couple pages from the museum’s activity & coloring book.

The small house museum opened in 1991 and is the only African American museum in the Central Savannah River Area. It is located in the Historic Laney-Walker District and promotes “the legacy of Miss Lucy Craft Laney through art, history and the preservation of her home.” Miss Laney started the first kindergarten class for black children in Augusta and founded the Lamar School of Nursing for black women.

Also pictured in this post are images of promotional material for past exhibitions held at the museum and conference center.

Current events and other information can be found on the museum’s website Lucycraftlaneymuseum.com or by calling 706-724-3576.

Field notes — “Black Metropolis: 30 Years of Afrofuturism”

Opening night of “Black Metropolis: 30 Years of Afrofuturism, Comics, Music, Animation, Decapitated Chickens, Heroes, Villains and Negroes” took place at the Hammonds House Museum on Friday October 12, 2018. That evening Afrofuturist and visual artist, Tim Fielder, engaged in an artist talk.

Pictured above are a few notes taken during Tim Fielder’s artist talk. I will get back to this shortly, but first I want to offer a few thoughts developed after examining the Black Metropolis exhibit.

In the brochure pictured on the right, Tim Fielder provides an exhibit manifesto. He describes BLACK METROPOLIS as an “emotional ideal, not necessarily the physical construct…where Black people can be anything or anyone they choose.”

Fielder has developed a series of Black sci-fi superheroes to convey stories of empowerment or as Fielder expressed in his artist talk – “BLACK Ben Hurs”. Fielder considers himself an afroturism visual artist. His graphic designs and excerpts from his written work are currently on display at the Hammonds House Museum.

For me, the most interesting part of the exhibit is the context described on the exhibit labels. Fielder describes the highs and lows of his career. Examples of this includes the time he produced visuals and a story for the now defunct Marvel Music. Dr. Dre: Man With a Cold Heart featured rap pioneer Dr. Dre. When Marvel Comics declared bankruptcy the material was never published. Luckily, visitors can view this work at the Hammonds House museum.

Tim Fielder completed studies in New York at The School of Visual Arts. During that time he worked as a freelance editorial cartoonist for Village Voice. He also produced promotional material for entertainment venues.

A booklet titled Death Comes in Fours hangs near the “Alternative Cartooning” exhibit label. The last few pages are dedicated to advertisements. There you will see that members of the Fielder family once had a business operation in Georgia’s South DeKalb Mall.

Death Comes in Fours features characters inspired by Yoruba diety.

BLACK METROPOLIS exhibits 30 years of Tim Fielder’s work. In many ways, Fielder’s artist talk was something like an Afrofuturism 101. Below are a few notes taken during that discussion:

  • Terminology used within the Afrofuturism community include “DieselFunk” and “SteamFunk”
  • Tim Fielder and his brother Jim have a “Glog” which is similar to a video blog but with graphics. Diesel Funk
  • Tim suggests Octavia Butler’s “Wildseed” as a go-to book for first time science fiction readers
  • Octavia Butler, a black woman, was the first sci-fi writer to win a MacArthur Fellowship
  • Octavia Butler and others are featured in a documentary entitled “Black Sci-Fi”
  • Pedro Bell produced Afrofuturistic styled album covers for George Clinton and Funkadelic
  • Tim Fielder feels LaBelle, Brothers Johnson, Earth Wind and Fire embodied Afrofuturism – Sun-RA? Not so much.
  • Janelle Monae recently talked about Afrofuturism on Stephen Colbert. That’s major!
  • Ryan Coogler and his work on Black Panther has influenced financial opportunities for afrofuturism visual artists
  • Netflix has democratized how film media is manufactured, published and consumed. Creating a greater opportunity for visual artists to get their work out there.
  • Tim Fielder was a guest on the Afrofuturist podcast. Although I do not see where that episode has been uploaded, check out this interview with Nyame Brown. Brown does a great job of contextualizing what Afrofuturism is and what it can be.

Field notes and review prepared by TheHistorian528 for The Merging Lane Project

Wil Haygood Guest Curates Harlem Renaissance at 100 Exhibit

(Schools Out, 1936. Allan Rohan Crite. Oil on Canvas. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

(Ralph Deluca Collection of African American Vernacular Photography. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

(Ralph Deluca Collection of African American Vernacular Photography. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

(Jumping Jive, 1942. Norman Lewis. Oil on canvas. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

(Type Study, II – Two Public School Teachers, 1925. Winold Reiss. Pastel on Whatman Board. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

(Harlem Girl, 1925. Winold Reiss. Pencil, charcoal and pastels on heavy illustration board. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

(Gamin, 1930. Augusta Savage. Painted Plaster. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

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(I, Too, Sing America: The Harlem Renaissance at 100 writer and exhibition curator, Wil Haygood. Photo courtesy of Columbus Museum of Art)

Familiar with the motion picture The Butler? Acclaimed writer, Wil Haygood, authored the book that was turned into the award-winning movie.

In 2015, Columbus Museum of Art Executive Director Nannette V. Maciejunes invited Haygood, a Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow, to curate an exhibition for the 100th anniversary of the Harlem Renaissance. This resulted in an exhibition and accompanying 250-page catalogue written by Haygood, entitled I, Too, Sing America: The Harlem Renaissance at 100.

Haygood grew up in the Bronzeville neighborhood of Columbus, Ohio and was a reporter for both the Boston Globe and the Washington Post. He has written books on notable subjects including Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, and Sugar Ray Robinson. As guest curator for the exhibit and supplementary book, Haygood researched and selected a series of “paintings, prints, sculpture, contemporary documents and ephemera” to illustrate “multiple facets of the era” and the “lives of its people, the art, literature, music, and social history.”

The works of Allen Rohan Crite, Romare Bearden, and Augusta Savage are included in the exhibition. The exhibition is open to the public at the Columbus Museum of Art, now through January 20, 2019.

Click link to .PDF version of 250-page Catalogue, below:

I,Too, Sing America book

 

Log onto cbusharlem100.com for a listing of Columbus, Ohio events that celebrate the Harlem Renaissance at 100