Several recent, high-profile developments have focused international attention on African art, both historic and contemporary, including its collecting, curation, and status in museums, with an intensity that has not been seen before. In the case of current dialogues about African art, this desire is further motivated by Harvard’s world-class museums–the Harvard Art Museums and the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology–each of which engage with art from the African continent, though in markedly different ways.
The Center for African Studies has identified a natural synergy among our faculty and our community to deepen and broaden our engagement with African arts. We envision this African Arts Initiative around four main activities:
- Moderated conversations and interviews with artists;
- Online art exhibitions to be hosted by the CAS Africa Office;
- Occasional workshops like the forthcoming “Future of African Curatorial Practice”; and
- Residencies for artists and curators at Harvard.