On a visit come an apartment in Crown Heights, i noticed a large poster the Aaron Douglas native Fisk University. “My dad offered to serve as chairman of the alumni association, so ns am proud the this.”

Building much more Stately Mansions through Aaron Douglas

Aaron Douglas, the founder the the arts Department in ~ Fisk, to be the main figure of the Harlem Renaissance. Amongst his most celebrated works, over there is “Building much more Stately Mansions” (BMSM) i m sorry is currently treasured in ~ Fisk University. One more smaller variation was auctioned through Swann Auction Galleries in brand-new York and sold to the Rhode Island school of style (RISD) for half a million dollars (hammer price).

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BMSM, native every aspect, tells vividly the central role of Egyptomania in Harlem Renaissance: the is a painting that honors the contributions black color laborers make to an excellent civilizations of the past.

Here is the RISD news excerpt.

Douglas’ distinct Modernist style emerged throughout intense engagement with other African-American artists, writers, and also musicians whom he encountered once he moved to Harlem in 1925. His work commemorated the intellectual and also artistic accomplishments of Africans and African-Americans, which were lugged to life by Douglas in an impressive collection of mural commissions. Building much more Stately mansions symbolizes the job of black men and also women in the creation of good architectural monuments, silhouetting their active figures versus a utopian background. Concentric bands that muted shade suggest waves of background and knowledge, linking the home builders of pyramids, temples, and also churches come the skyscrapers of the present and anticipating future achievements.

Then came the touchy question? Can blacks rightly case the Egyptian cultural heritage?

Dr. Zahi Hawass commented the “Egyptians room not Arabs and are not Africans despite the fact that Egypt is in Africa.”

From what we understand now, Egyptians had actually no ide of racism, although they did look under upon the people outside of Egypt. For them, the civilization of Egypt is small and in peace and harmony. Chaos place outside. Thus, at times, there were Nubian (African) majesties ruling Egypt by gift Egyptianized, yet Nubia was a various country. What Aaron Douglas depicted, hence may just partially ring true: African come to old Egypt to work as soldiers, servants or various other careers. Absolutely they contributed to the old civilization however cannot place sole claim to it.

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Interestingly, over there is a paint by Aaron Douglas in the upcoming auction by Swann Auction Galleries. This is a beloved pastel portrait of Aaron’s wife, Alta. The is estimated in between 15,000 to 20,000 dollars.