African Art and the Modernist Eye

February 18, 2010

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Fang; Gabon. Reliquary Figure (Nlo Bieri), Late 19th/early 20th century. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Wielgus.

Inspired by a modernist fascination with the "primitive," the first half of the 20th century saw a developing aesthetic appreciation for objects from sub-Saharan Africa and elsewhere, which formerly were dismissed as mere curiosities or classified as ethnographica.

Christa Clarke of the Newark Museum considers the influence of modernism in shaping Western perceptions of African art, as reflected in exhibition display as well as the formation of institutional and private collections in the United States.

 

Recorded Thursday, February 18, 2010 at The Art Institute of Chicago - Price Auditorium.