The Cultivators: Highlights from the Kinsey African American Art and History Collection
January 15–March 27, 2022
Pepperdine University’s Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art presents the exhibition The Cultivators: Highlights from the Kinsey African American Art and History Collection, featuring masterful works of art, photographs, rare books, letters, and manuscripts that chronicle the achievements and contributions of African Americans over the last five centuries. Curated by Khalil Kinsey and Larry Earl, The Cultivators includes some of the collection’s signature objects, which have traveled the globe to more than 30 venues over the last 15 years, along with works that have never before been shown publicly. Marking the first major hometown presentation of the Kinsey Collection since 2007, The Cultivators will be on view at the Weisman Museum of Art from January 15 to March 27, 2022.
Representing the intersection between art and history, the exhibition covers the lives, accomplishments, and artistry of African Americans from the 16th century through the years of slavery and emancipation, to the Civil Rights Movement and up to the present day. Important objects include bills of sale, advertisements, letters, and legal papers documenting the slave trade; hand-colored tintypes from the Civil War era; art and literature from the Harlem Renaissance; and items spotlighting key moments in the Civil Rights Movement, which are linked in this presentation to the story of the 1963 student protests at Florida A&M University. Bernard and Shirley Kinsey began their journey together at Florida A&M before eventually settling in California, where they both earned graduate degrees from Pepperdine University and raised a son, Khalil, who now serves as chief operating officer and chief curator of the Kinsey African American Art and History Collection and Foundation.
The Kinseys’ art collection reflects their journey of self-discovery, respective upbringings, and shared experiences. Discovering new places and ideas through travel has shaped their vision of themselves as cultural caretakers of Black history and culture, charged with sharing it with the world. The Cultivators charts a history of African American art through more than 30 exemplary works by celebrated figures, including Ernie Barnes, John Biggers, Bisa Butler, Elizabeth Catlett, Robert S. Duncanson, Sam Gilliam, Jacob Lawrence, Norman Lewis, Augusta Savage, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Alma Thomas, Charles White, and many more.
A fully illustrated catalogue documenting the Kinsey Collection is available for purchase at the museum, along with an edited volume exploring the collection’s major figures and themes.
The Cultivators: Highlights from the Kinsey African American Art and History Collection is organized by the Bernard and Shirley Kinsey Foundation for Arts & Education and KBK Enterprises, Incorporated, with major support from AEG. Generous support has been provided by City National Bank.
UPCOMING PUBLIC PROGRAMS
Kinsey Collection Closing Celebration
Sunday, March 27, 2022 • 11 AM – 5 PM
Come celebrate the closing of The Cultivators: Highlights from the Kinsey African American Art and History Collection! Join us on Sunday, March 27 from 11 AM to 5 PM for a day of gallery talks, food trucks, and a lecture by the Kinsey family honoring the achievements of Black women.
This event is free and open to the public, but advance registration is required.
Gallery Talks: 11 AM–1 PM
Food Trucks: 11 AM–2 PM (Billionaire Burger Boyz; Savage Tacos Truck)
Lecture by the Kinsey Family Honoring Black Women: 2 PM (Elkins Auditorium; click here to watch the lecture in real time)
Museum Open: 11 AM-5 PM
TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE KINSEY COLLECTION:
The Kinseys have been profiled on a number of podcasts and TV shows, including L.A.'s own Spectrum News 1.
January 15–March 27, 2022
Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art