By Special to the Daily World
The Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, the only museum in the nation that emphasizes art by and about women of the African Diaspora, will celebrate its 15th anniversary with the launch of the 15 x 15: Acquisitions Initiative on Thursday, Sept. 8. The exhibition is on view through Dec. 3, 2011.
The Museum’s 15 x 15 Acquisitions Initiative is a three-part project that involves: acquiring works by 15 emerging, mid-career and established artists; an exhibition, “15 x 15: The 15th Anniversary Acquisitions Exhibition,” presenting the 15 soon-to-be-acquired works alongside works by celebrated artists including Romare Bearden, Elizabeth Catlett, Jacob Lawrence, and Hale Woodruff, which have been in Spelman College’s collection for decades, and a catalogue to be created with the involvement of scholars, faculty and students
The 15 x 15 Acquisitions Initiative was carefully crafted over the course of more than a year and has been developed in direct response to previous exhibition projects. It creates a context for the college’s past, present and future collecting efforts, and honors the museum’s unique emphasis on art by and about women of the African Diaspora.
Andrea Barnwell Brownlee, director of the museum, explained, “This anniversary initiative punctuates the museum’s special milestone in a deliberate and methodical way. By working with friends and supporters to acquire a range of important works by 15 Black women artists, the museum will stimulate the growth of the college’s permanent holdings and expand the Museum’s emphasis on Black women artists in meaningful, tangible ways.”
A varied calendar of events is scheduled in conjunction with the 15th anniversary and acquisitions initiative, beginning with Fête: The Official Launch Party for 15 x 15 on Sept. 8 at 7 p.m. This celebration features an exclusive musical experience with internationally-acclaimed DJ Kai Alcé.
The museum was established in 1996 with major financial support from Drs. Bill and Camille Cosby through the Clara Elizabeth Jackson Carter Foundation. This gift set the stage for the next phase of the college’s visual arts evolution and was also a charge for Spelman to make a significant impact on the field. The museum has since been recognized for its visionary leadership and for expanding exhibition offerings in Atlanta, the region and internationally. For more information, visit www.spelman.edu/museum and www.spelmanmuseum.org.