This is a timely, visual, exploration of the fascinating life and lasting legacy of sculptor Augusta Savage (1892-1962), who overcame poverty, racism, and sexual discrimination to become one of America's most influential twentieth-century artists. Her story is one of community-building, activism, and art education.
Born just outside Jacksonville, Florida, Savage left the South to pursue new opportunities and opened a studio in Harlem, New York City, offering free art classes. She co-founded the Harlem Artists' Guild in 1935 and became the first director of the federally-supported Harlem Community Art Center. Through her leadership there, Savage played an instrumental role in the development of many artists: William Artis, Gwendolyn Knight, Gwendolyn Bennett, Norman Lewis, Jacob Lawrence, Robert Blackburn, Romare Bearden, among many others.
This ground-breaking volume features fifty works by Savage, and those she mentored or influenced, as well as correspondence and period photographs.
Jeffreen M. Hayes, Ph.D. is an art historian, curator, and the Executive Director of Threewalls, a non-profit contemporary art space based in Chicago. Howard Dodson is the former director of New York Public Library's Schomburg Center. Bridget R. Cooks fills a joint appointment in the Program in African American Studies and the Department of Art History at University of California, Irvine. Kirsten Pai Buick, Ph.D. is associate professor, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque.
Lenders to the Exhibition; Foreword; Curator's Acknowledgments; Introduction; Labor, Love, Legacy: Augusta Savage's Art by Jeffreen M. Hayes; Augusta Savage: A Gallery of Their Own by Bridget R. Cooks; Monu*ment*ality: Edmonia Lewis, Meta Fuller, Augusta Savage and the Re-Envisioning of Public Space by Kirsten Pai Buick; Plates; Selected Letters and Archival Photographs; Exhibition Checklist; Selected Bibliography; Index; Photo Credits