Seven works of art from Howard University Art Gallery featured in Delaware Museum of Art exhibit
“Afro-American Images 1971: The Vision of Percy Ricks” honors the 50th anniversary of a groundbreaking exhibition on black art. Presented by the Delaware Art Museum and Aesthetic Dynamics, Inc., the show will be accompanied by a rich program celebrating African-American culture. The show is accompanied by a solid program, including performances, gallery talks and a family day.
“The Delaware Art Museum’s resurrection of this landmark exhibit of African-American art draws attention to lesser-known artists who, despite their successful careers, have remained largely unrecognized,” said Lisa Farrington, Ph.D., Associate Dean of Chadwick A. Boseman College of Fine Arts and Director of the Gallery of Art. “We are proud to have had Howard’s own art history professor, Melanee Harvey, Ph.D., who contributed an essay to the exhibition catalog, and Howard’s student, Ellington (Ellie) Lindsey (HU ’22), conduct curatorial research at the Delaware Art Museum as part of this special collaboration.
The exhibit celebrates the legacy of Wilmington artist, educator, and former Howard student Percy Ricks. Ricks founded the Wilmington-based artist collective Aesthetic Dynamics, Inc. and put together “Afro-American Images 1971” to highlight the influence of African-American artists in Wilmington.
“By curating ‘Afro-American Images 1971,’ Percy Ricks created an iconic exhibit that showcased a rich network of artists,” said Margaret Winslow, curator of contemporary art at the Delaware Art Museum. “Howard University, Ricks’ Alma Mater, was an important cultural link at the heart of this network. We are deeply grateful to the University for its extensive art loans and for the work of Howard faculty, staff and students, especially Dr. Lisa E. Farrington, Scott W. Baker, Dr. Abby R. Eron, Dr. Melanee C. Harvey and Ellington Lindsey, on the revival of this historic exhibit.
Visitors will see a recreation of the historic “African American Images 1971” exhibit. The exhibition will include most of the artists who participated in the 1971 exhibition, many of whom are known locally – Humbert Howard, Simmie Knox, Edward Loper Sr. and Edward Loper Jr. – as well as those recognized nationally, including Romare Bearden, Sam Gilliam, Lois Mailou Jones, Faith Ringgold, Alma Thomas and Hale Woodruff. By re-hanging the exhibit as accurately as possible, the partner organizations hope to examine the exhibit’s role in the black arts movement and question why this seemingly successful event has been largely overlooked by historians in the decades since.
Howard University Art Gallery Contributions to “African American Pictures 1971: The Vision of Percy Ricks”
Picture 1: Harlan Jackson, “Camp #1”, 1967, mixed media on canvas, courtesy of Howard University Gallery of Art
Picture 2: Raymond Saunders, “Mother and Child”, 1961, acrylic on canvas, purchased through the Museum’s Donor Program
Picture 3: Charles McGee, “Despondency,” Nd, oil on Masonite-type panel, courtesy Howard University Gallery of Art
Picture 4: Peter L. Robinson, Jr., “Amorphous Cloud”, 1970, oil on canvas, bequest of the artist
Picture 5: Edward L. Loper, ‘Angry City’, 1961, oil on panel, courtesy Howard University Gallery of Art
Picture 6: Delilah Pierce, ‘Gayhead Cliffs, Martha’s Vineyard’, nd, oil on canvas, courtesy Howard University Gallery of Art
Picture 7: James L. Wells, “Salome,” 1963, oil on canvas, purchased as a gift from President Swygert
About Howard University
Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private research university comprised of 14 schools and colleges. Students follow more than 140 study programs leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University operates with a commitment to excellence in truth and service and has produced one Schwarzman Scholars, three Marshall Scholars, four Rhodes Scholars, 12 Truman Scholars, 25 Pickering Scholars, and more than 165 Fulbright recipients. Howard is also producing more African-American doctorates on campus. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, visit www.howard.edu.
On Delaware Museum of Art
For more than 100 years, the museum has served as the primary arts and cultural institution in Delaware. It is alive with experiences, discoveries and activities to connect people with art and each other. Originally established in 1912 to honor renowned illustrator and Wilmington native, Howard Pyle, the museum’s collection has grown to over 12,000 works of art in our building and sculpture garden. Also renowned for British Pre-Raphaelite art, the museum houses the most comprehensive Pre-Raphaelite collection on display outside the UK and a growing collection of significant contemporary art. Visit delart.org for the latest exhibitions, programs and performances, or connect with us via social media.
Media Contact: Aaliyah Butler; [email protected]