Sharing Steve :: New Stuff
Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Steve's foundation supports the banjo arts

...umm is right on top of things.
Corcoran Gallery of Art
Exhibitions Coming Soon
Picturing the Banjo
December 10, 2005 to March 6, 2006

The banjo has always played an integral role in American culture, music, and social history. For the first time, this instrument and the many images of it found in American art will be the focus of a major exhibition at the Corcoran entitled Picturing the Banjo.

On view from December 10, 2005 through March 6, 2006, Picturing the Banjo will explore how the banjo has been portrayed in paintings, drawings, photographs, and other artifacts dating from the eighteenth century through the present.

Originally brought to the United States by African slaves, the banjo has evolved into an almost iconic American instrument, seen in the hands of a cast of characters as varied as folk balladeers, traveling minstrels, vaudeville performers, and proper Gilded Age girls. Over the centuries, the banjo has inspired an eclectic array of American artists, a wide variety of which are represented in the exhibition. From the earliest known painting of a banjo (The Old Plantation, 1790, artist unknown), to contemporary African American artist Kara Walker's monumental mural (Narratives of a Negress, 2002-2003), the banjo figures prominently in the artistic stories Americans have told, and continue to tell, about themselves. Featured in the exhibition will be the Corcoran’s painting A Pastoral Visit by Richard Norris Brooke (1881).

Picturing the Banjo is organized by the Palmer Museum of Art of the Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, with support from the Friends of the Palmer Museum of Art.

The Corcoran’s presentation is supported by the Steve Martin Charitable Foundation, Catherine Dail, an anonymous donor, and the President’s Exhibition Fund.


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