“Blue&Black: African Rainbow”

“Hermes Trigmegistus” by Amos Ashanti Johnson
On this week’s episode of Campus Voices, host Richard Gordon and intern Kayla Baptiste visited Mechanical Hall Gallery  for the opening of the spring 2016 exhibition “Blue&Black: African Rainbow.” Julie McGee, curator of the exhibition, and Ivan Henderson, curator of education for University Museums, were our guides. After the tour, we chatted with several students and faculty members about their reactions to the exhibition.

“Maka Wicasa” by Kaylyn Sullivan TwoTrees

Amos Ashanti Johnson, Arturo Lindsay and Kaylyn Sullivan TwoTrees are some of the artists highlighted in the exhibition for their works’ contribution to “the aesthetic and narrative agencies of the African diaspora.” African legacies are prevalent in each piece that speaks to the artists’ ancestral roots.

“African Rainbow” by Amos Ashanti Johnson

Amos Ashanti Johnson’s large pastels “African Rainbow” and “Hermes Trigmegistus” lends its inspiration to symbols associated with African American holidays and the African diaspora. Johnson’s middle name is adopted from the Ashanti tribe. For more information about how Johnson’s pastels were conserved, check out the Conserving Hermes Trigmegistus & African Rainbow page on the University Museum’s website.

Other pieces to look for are Arturo Lindsay’s “Children of the Middle Passage” and Kaylyn Sullivan TwoTrees’s “Maka Wicasa” which tie into the African American ancestral and cultural narrative.

All of the art works displayed were taken from the University of Delaware African American art collection, many of which are part of the Paul R. Jones collection.

Listen to the Interview

Ivan Henderson and Julie McGee, University Museums
28.8 MB

Photos Courtesy of the University Museum’s website.