The Nasher Museum presents a major nationwide touring exhibition that offers a new perspective on the critical contribution that artists of African descent have made to the evolution of abstract art from 1940s to the present. Solidary and Solitary: The Pamela J Joyner and Alfred J Giuffrida Collection is the first large-scale public exhibition to bring together a lineage of visionary black artists. The exhibition begins in the mid-20th century with Abstract Expressionist Norman Lewis and traces a line to some of today’s most celebrated artists, including Theaster Gates and Lorna Simpson, as well as Mark Bradford, who represents the United States at the Venice Biennale 2017.
Solidary and Solitary draws on the Pamela J. Joyner and Alfred J. Giuffrida Collection, which started in 1999 with a focus on abstract work by post-war and contemporary African-American artists, from 1945 to the present. In recent years, the collection’s focus has expanded to include artists from Africa and the global African diaspora.
Solidary and Solitary opens at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans (September 30, 2017 – January 21, 2018) and will travel to the Nasher Museum (February 15 – July 15, 2018), the Snite Museum of Art at Notre Dame University (August 20 – November 25, 2018) and the Baltimore Museum of Art (March – July 2019).
The exhibition is co-curated by Christopher Bedford, Dorothy Wagner Wallis Director of the Baltimore Museum of Art, and Katy Siegel, senior programming and research curator at the Baltimore Museum of Art and Thaw Chair in Modern American Art at Stony Brook University.
The Solidary and Solitary tour is supported by the Helis Foundation and made possible with the support of the Pamela J Joyner and Alfred J Giuffrida Collection. A companion publication, Four Generations: The Joyner/Giuffrida Collection of Abstract Art, is published by Gregory Miller and edited by Courtney J. Martin (incoming deputy director and chief curator at Dia Art Foundation, New York), featuring new research and writing from curators at some of the world’s leading institutions.
IMAGE ABOVE: Alma Thomas (1891–1978), Pink Dogwoods and Azaleas, 1971, Oil on canvas; 25 x 25 inches (63.5 x 63.5 cm), © Charles Thomas Lewis. Photo by Ian Reeves.