Narrative Wisdom and African Arts explores how historical and contemporary African arts make visible narratives rooted in collective and individual memory and knowledge.
The exhibition acknowledges the intersections between certain historical arts and oral traditions, placing historical works made by artists across sub-Saharan Africa from the 13th to 20th centuries in conversation with contemporary works by African artists around the globe.
Pictorial forms are featured prominently. In this way, Narrative Wisdom and African Arts breaks from biases toward formal abstraction in African art. By underscoring the mutability of meanings associated with African narrative arts, the exhibition challenges Western constructs of narrative.
Drawing from public and private collections in North America, Europe and African, the exhibition features an extensive array of media, including sculpture in wood, ivory and metal, textiles, works on paper, photography, painting and time-based works.
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