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African art

Curator’s Corner

To Mask or Not to Mask

Monday, August 2, 2021 | Karl Cole

The word “mask” gets an emotional response from some folks in these days of pandemic. I wonder, if the masks we're asked to wear looked like these following examples from Davis Digital&rsq ...

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Curator’s Corner

Pride Month 2020, Part 2

Monday, June 15, 2020 | Karl Cole

My Pride Month celebration continues with photographer Zanele Muholi. ...

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Curator’s Corner

Not Just Furniture

Monday, September 17, 2018 | Karl Cole

When we talk about art that reconciles political, spiritual, and social beliefs all in one pertinent statement—and I’m certainly not talking about ancient Assyrian art, Jacques-Louis David ...

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Curator’s Corner

The Bill for Art

Monday, April 24, 2017 | Karl Cole

No, this is not some sort of philosophical jaunt through current government threats to cut all funding for the arts and libraries, though goodness knows that could be a college dissertation. Actually, ...

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Curator’s Corner

World Watercolor Month

Friday, July 8, 2016 | Karl Cole

July is World Watercolor Month. I’m always happy to celebrate a medium in which I am really not terribly good. I have a feeling it’s because I’m an impatient Virgo who can’t st ...

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Curator’s Corner

Utilitarian Object or Sculpture?

Friday, November 13, 2015 | Karl Cole

First of all, let me clarify the use of “utilitarian” or “decorative arts.” These are unfortunately terms art historians are stuck with from the 1800s art history gods in Weste ...

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Curator’s Corner

Stories of Ruler Portraits

Monday, October 19, 2015 | Karl Cole

Since (ugh) election time coming around once again, let’s look at some interesting portraits of people who were never elected (except for the last one). There are always interesting tidbits abou ...

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Curator’s Corner

African Realism

Monday, June 15, 2015 | Karl Cole

During the 1800s, when European invaders were exploiting the riches of the African continent, art historians were “astounded” at the richness and variety of African art. They had no knowle ...

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Curator’s Corner

Some Thoughts About Stools

Monday, May 11, 2015 | Karl Cole

Does furniture have a soul? I sort of think it does. We sit on, lean on, and lie down on furniture for most of our lives. It’s hard to believe that something of our souls does not get infused in ...

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Curator’s Corner

Abstraction is Nothing New

Monday, May 4, 2015 | Karl Cole

I’m making a declaration: artists were inspired to create abstract art thousands of years ago. When one (and by “one” I mean a person reading an art history text) reads about any art ...

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Curator’s Corner

African American History Month 2015 I

Monday, February 9, 2015 | Karl Cole

African American artists in the 21st century have embraced every art form, style, and new development, as well as pioneering many on their own. They have the added distinction of contributing a unique ...

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Curator’s Corner

Survey No. 12: Abstraction

Monday, February 2, 2015 | Karl Cole

In our art history survey, we are now at the end with the 1900s. The big “revelation” in Western art starting very late in the 1800s and flowering in the early 1900s was abstraction. Abstr ...

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Curator’s Corner

Survey No. 7: The 1700s

Monday, December 22, 2014 | Karl Cole

As we approach the 1800s in our Art History Survey, just so we do not forget (as if) that art was being produced in other parts of the world besides the West, let’s look elsewhere at art produce ...

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Curator’s Corner

Sous-Verre Painting

Monday, March 10, 2014 | Karl Cole

I once watched an artist in Switzerland do a reverse painting on glass, and the technique amazed me. As an artist, one is thinking in reverse, literally painting details and foreground first, then mid ...

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Curator’s Corner

My Mask Mania

Monday, April 29, 2013 | Karl Cole

Thanks to Steven Tatum at Virginia Tech for educating me about African masks, an art form I’ve long been fascinated by. The variety of forms and uses boggles my Western European accustomed mind! ...

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Curator’s Corner

An African Photographer

Monday, October 18, 2010 | Karl Cole

In looking at the history of art, I always try to appreciate art that is under-appreciated. Photography has been accepted as an art form since the early 1900s, although is it rarely studied outside of ...

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