Cosby lends collection of African-American art
By BRETT ZONGKER
After amassing a private collection of African-American Art over four decades, Bill Cosby and his wife, Camille, plan to showcase their holdings for the first time in an exhibition planned at the Smithsonian Institution.
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art announced Monday that the entire Cosby collection will go on view in November in a unique exhibit juxtaposing African-American art with African art.
The collection, which will be loaned to the museum, includes works by such leading African-American artists as Beauford Delaney, Faith Ringgold, Jacob Lawrence, Augusta Savage and Henry Ossawa Tanner. The Cosby collection of more than 300 African-American paintings, prints, sculptures and drawings has never been loaned or seen publicly, except for one work of art.
“It’s so important to show art by African-American artists in this exhibition,” Cosby said in a written statement. “To me, it’s a way for people to see what exists and to give voice to many of these artists who were silenced for so long, some of whom will speak no more.”
Cosby, 77, is a comedian, actor and author best known for TV sitcom, “The Cosby Show,” which aired from 1984 to 1992.
The exhibit “Conversations: African and African-American Artworks in Dialogue” will open Nov. 9 and will be on view through early 2016. It is part of the museum’s 50 anniversary celebration.