AAS 358 - Topics in Black World Studies
Section: 001 Black Art, White Cube: Exhibiting Africa in the Museum of Art
Term: FA 2017
Subject: Afroamerican & African Studies (AAS)
Department: LSA Afroamerican and African Studies
Credits:
3
Waitlist Capacity:
99
Repeatability:
May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit(s).
Primary Instructor:

How does one exhibit African art? What does it mean to represent Africa and Africans in the art museum? How do such representations shape perceptions of the continent? Is exhibiting African art any different than exhibiting art from other parts of the world?

Black Art, White Cube offers a unique opportunity to learn about historical and contemporary practices associated with exhibiting Africa in the art museum. The course title references a term — “white cube” — used to describe the modernist space in which African art is exhibited in many 20th- and 21st-century art museums. Students will work closely with the instructor and the Curator for Africa at the University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA) to critique past and present strategies for exhibiting Africa, and to think about new approaches that might be employed to (re)present Africa in the art museum.

Black Art, White Cube considers the theory and practice of exhibiting African art, thinking critically about how one represents a continent in a museum of art. Woven into this experience is an introduction to the history of exhibiting African art during the 20th and 21st centuries; considering the social, political and aesthetic dynamics that have shaped where and how this art has been presented in galleries and museums in North America and elsewhere in the world. Course activities include reading and talking about African art and curatorial practice, critiquing the African gallery in UMMA as well as in other museums in Detroit and Toledo, and conducting visitor studies to learn what people know and don’t know about Africa. The Curator for Africa at UMMA is beginning to think about a new installation in the museum’s African gallery. Students will work with her to develop new strategies for exhibiting the museum’s African art collection.

AAS 358 - Topics in Black World Studies
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
P
25722
Open
8
 
-
TuTh 2:30PM - 4:00PM
002 (SEM)
P
31725
Open
8
 
-
TuTh 2:50PM - 4:10PM
003 (SEM)
P
27747
Open
9
 
-
TuTh 10:00AM - 11:30AM
005 (SEM)
P
25723
Open
7
 
-
F 11:00AM - 2:00PM
Note: This course will meet in Detroit. Transportation will be provided.
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Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

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