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A fine Eastern Pende Panya-Gombe African mask. Coll.: David Norden

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African Sculpture from the New Orleans Museum of Art in NYC

Museum for African Art, 36-01 43rd Avenue, Long Island City, Queens, (718)784-7700

Museum for African Art

Through June 5, 2005 the museum has on display a collection of African art on loan from the New Orleans Museum of Art. A theme of the exhibit is the relationship of African art to American jazz, which means it's a perfect fit for Queens, a borough known as the "hometown of jazz."


THIS EXHIBITION IS NOW ON VIEW IN The Texas San Antonio Museum of Art
The Museum for African Art is a great small museum in Long Island City.

 The collection is nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century art from central and western Africa with outstanding examples of Yoruba religious sculpture.


Veranda post. Yoruba, Nigeria. Olowe of Ise 

Ifa divination bowl. Yoruba, Nigeria.

Reliquary figures. Fang, Gabon.

Resonance from the Past:
African Sculpture from the New Orleans Museum of Art

3 February to 5 June 2005 Curated by Frank Herreman, formerly Deputy Director for Exhibitions, MAA

     Resonance from the Past consists of over 94 works of art from the New Orleans Museum of Art, including masks and figures, musical instruments, ceramics, and fabric and beadwork costumes chosen from the extensive collection of the museum by Frank Herreman, formerly Deputy Director for Exhibitions at Museum for African Art. This exceptional selection is available because NOMA will be rebuilding its African galleries until 2007 and would like to use this period to make its collection better known. The exhibition includes all of the best objects from the collection.

     New Orleans is famous for music, food, jazz funerals, Mardi Gras Indians, voodoo and other cults. It is considered the most African of American cities, for these elements are linked to the African origins of many of its inhabitants. New Orleans is also considered the birthplace of jazz, perhaps the most influential expression of African American culture. When NOMA decided to actively collect works of art from sub-Saharan Africa about forty years ago, it was motivated by the centuries old connection between New Orleans and Africa, and by the feeling that for this reason New Orleans deserved an important collection of African art. A sub-text of this exhibition will be to compare formal elements of jazz and African sculpture in order to illuminate the aesthetic connections between them. In the catalogue, Professor Robert Farris Thompson of Yale, the leading authority on African survivals in African American culture, will discuss the affinities between African art, American heritage and jazz. In addition, several famous jazz musicians will discuss their impressions of African art and its relationship to jazz.

     The exhibition will present works from west and central Africa. It includes important groups of sculpture from the Dogon and Bamana peoples of Mali, a selection of figures and masks of the Dan, We and Bete people of Ivory Coast, which run the gamut from idealistic to expressionistic forms, and Akan sculpture from the Baule and Asante people. A highlight of the show will be the outstanding collection of Yoruba art used in ceremonies of the Ogboni, Gelede, Ifa and Epa cults. The collection includes major works by the celebrated sculptors Olowe of Ise and Areogun as well as dazzling examples of beadwork. Other works from Nigeria come from the kingdom of Benin and from the Igbo and Ijo peoples.

     From equatorial Africa come a royal mask and figure from the Cameroon Grasslands, three major Fang reliquary figures, and works of the Punu and Lumbo. The exhibition concludes with a series of works from peoples who live in the Congo basin. They include ancestor and power figures, in wood and ivory, from the Bembe, Teke and Yombe. The exhibition concludes dramatically with figures from the Chokwe, Luba and Tabwa peoples of Angola.

related articles:


African Creativity, More About the Momentary Than the Monumental

The magic of SAMA's Resonance from the Past is in its everyday spirituality

 Long-Island  New Tribal art  Museum relocation UBS-art-gallery Ibedji-NYC

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Albuquerque museum
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African creativity 

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The Tribal Arts of Africa

The Tribal Arts of Africa
Author: Jean-Baptiste Bacquart

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