Blog / Blake Byrne – Distinguished Alumni Award 2013


Portrait of Blake Byrne with Kehinde Wiley’s St. John the Baptist II. Photo by Ed Carreon.


Congratulations to Blake Byrne, Chair Emeritus of the Nasher Museum Board of Advisors, who was recently honored with Duke’s 2013 Distinguished Alumni Award. The Duke Alumni Association Board of Directors established the award, the association’s highest honor, in 1983, determined to award it with great care to alumni who have distinguished themselves in service to their fields of endeavor, to Duke, or to humanity. To date, every recipient has committed him or herself to all three.

Byrne has been instrumental in helping to bolster the Nasher Museum’s contemporary art collection, not least of which was the addition 37 works of arts as promised gifts in 2007, on the occasion of his 50th reunion at Duke, in honor of Raymond D. Nasher, the late founder and namesake of the Nasher Museum.


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Pictured: Selections from Blake Byrne’s gifts to the Nasher Museum

Glenn Ligon, Study for Negro Sunshine II #11, 11© Glenn Ligon. Oil stick and gesso on paper. 10 1/16 x 8 1/16 inches (25.6 x 20.5 cm) Mount: 11 1/2 x 9 1/2 in. (29.2 x 24.1 cm). Gift of Blake Byrne, T’57. 2012.3.1. Image courtesy Regen Projects, Los Angeles. Photo by Brian Forrest.

Zanele Muholi, Katlego Mashiloane and Nosipho Lavuta, Ext. 2, Lakeside, Johannesburg, 2007. Lambda print, edition 7/8. 30 3/16 x 30 1/8 inches (76.7 x 76.5 cm). Gift of Blake Byrne, T’57. 2012.14.1. © Zanele Muholi.

Bruce W. Talamon, David Hammons, Bakersfield City College, 1974. Gelatin silver print, edition 1/10. 19 x 13 inches (48.3 x 33 cm). Gift of Blake Byrne, T’57. 2011.21.1. Photograph by Bruce Talamon © 1974 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. 

 Robert Pruitt, Mama, 2011. Conté, gold leaf and charcoal on hand-dyed paper; 72 3/8 x 60 inches (183.8 x 152.4 cm). Collection of the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, NC. Gift of Blake Byrne, T’57, in honor of Kimerly Rorschach; 2012.20.1. © Robert Pruitt. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.

Portrait of Blake Byrne with Kehinde Wiley’s St. John the Baptist II. Photo by Ed Carreon.

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