Taft Museum Presents: African Modernism in America
African Modernism in America features nearly 80 dynamic and vivid works of art created in Africa during the 1950s and ‘60s. Co-organized by the American Federation of Arts and Fisk University Galleries, the exhibition explores the relationships formed between African artists and American patrons, artists, and cultural organizations amid the interlocking histories of civil rights, decolonization, and the Cold War. Many of the paintings, sculptures, and works on paper in the show were drawn from Fisk’s remarkable collection of gifts from the Harmon Foundation. Following World War II, this foundation, along with other institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Fisk University, and other historically Black colleges and universities, supported and exhibited the work of Black artists, including the important modern African artists Ben Enwonwu (Nigeria), Ibrahim El-Salahi (Sudan), and Skunder Boghossian (Ethiopia). Showing African art in the United States rooted it in the present and encouraged American audiences to engage with African artists as contemporaries. The inventive nature of the works in this exhibition challenges the assumptions of the time about African art being isolated to a “primitive past.” Some pieces took inspiration from early Christian art, West African sculpture, and Nigerian literature, while others reflect the influences of American jazz and modern European art.
Date and Time
Saturday Feb 10, 2024Sunday May 19, 2024
Taft Museum of Art
Fifth Third Gallery
316 Pike Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202
Admission is free for Taft members, military, and youth (17 and under); $15 for adults; $12 for seniors. Save on tickets when you buy online. Admission is free on Sundays and Mondays! Learn more at taftmuseum.org/Exhibitions/AfricanModernism.