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November 13, 2012 | 10:00am - 6:00pm View Recurrence Dates
Category: Art Show
Location: Old Main Elaine L. Jacob Gallery | Map
4841 Cass
Detroit, MI 48201
Cost: free
Occurring: Weekly on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, until February, 8th 2013 View Recurrence Dates
Audience: Alumni, Community, Current Graduate Students, Current Undergraduate Students, Faculty, Parents, Prospective Students, Staff

The James Pearson Duffy Department of Art and Art History’s

Elaine L. Jacob Gallery is pleased to present

When Art Works: African Utilitarian Objects from the Faxon Collection

Curated by Dr. Nii O. Quarcoopome

Most Africans view art primarily as a tool of daily life that fulfills either a practical or symbolic purpose. When Art Works explores Africa’s utilitarian objects, a largely uncelebrated aspect of the continent’s rich artistic heritage. Whether intended as containers, implements, covers, or supports, the objects in this exhibition were once used in mundane activities in homes, artisans’ workshops, farms, and religious shrines, and not intended to hang on walls or sit on living room mantles. Each was created with practicality and convenience in mind. Yet, as mostly personal items, technical mastery and embellishments were also meant to please their owners.

These selections from the Jack Faxon collection speak to African artists’ extraordinary imagination and craftsmanship. While we lack precise information about who owned them, why they were made, and how they were handled, the objects embody rich and complex cultural histories. For some Africans, such objects may constitute all the art there is to see and to ignore them is to dismiss whole visual traditions.

Included image:
Smoking Pipe (Headless Human Figure)
Kwere culture
Tanzania, 20th century
ceramic, metal
16 x 8 1/2 x 7 3/4 in.
Photo by Tim Thayer

For more information about this event, please contact Tom Pyrzewski at 313-577-2423 or tpyrzewski@wayne.edu.