BMA Announces Acquisition of More Than 100 Objects and Suites Across Media, Culture, Geography, and Time
Press Release :: June 29
The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) announced today that it has acquired more than 100 objects and suites during winter and spring 2023. The broad range of works reflect the BMA’s ongoing commitment to diversify its collection across time, media, and culture; to bring forward new and under-recognized voices from across the globe; and to uplift artists with ties to Baltimore and the surrounding region. Among the major highlights is a purchase and promised gift from the P. Bruce Marine and Donald Hardy Collection that significantly enhances the museum’s holdings of paintings and works on paper by Black artists from the 19th through the 21st centuries.
The BMA purchased from the collection Charles White’s extraordinary 1938 drawing “Peace on Earth,” which depicts the Red Summer race riots of Chicago in 1919 and is an important example of the artist’s impact on the graphic tradition as a vehicle for messages of social justice. The work joins “The Voice of Jericho” (1958), a powerful print by White of his friend Harry Belafonte already in the BMA’s collection.
The Marine-Hardy Collection also gifted 19 works to the BMA by John Henry Adams Jr., Edward Mitchell Bannister, Eldzier Cortor, Viyé Diba, David Driskell, John Farrar, Kojo Griffin, Seydou Keïta, Joe Overstreet, Charles Ethan Porter, Laura Wheeler Waring, Philemona Williamson, and others. Together, these works allow the museum to narrate the achievements of African American and African diasporic artists more fully within the art historical canon.
Among the rich selection of works by artists connected to the Baltimore region are paintings by Linling Lu and Zéh Palito; mixed-media works by Charles Mason III, Devin N. Morris, Lavar Munroe, and Elizabeth Talford Scott; works on paper and photographs by Bernhard Hildebrandt, Zoë Charlton, Louis Fratino, and Elena Volkova; and sculpture, garments, and jewelry by Joyce J. Scott. The BMA also acquired objects by Omar Ba, Darrel Ellis, and Elle Pérez, who were featured in recent exhibitions, as well as works by Larry W. Cook Jr. and Steffani Jemison from the critically acclaimed presentation A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration.
John Ahearn’s “Bashira” (1992) entered the collection as the gift of BMA Trustee Michael Sherman and his wife Carrie Tivador. The sculpture was originally presented at the museum in 1992 as part of the exhibition Friends and Neighbors: The Art of John Ahearn and Rigoberto Torres. The BMA also acquired a video artwork by the artist’s twin, artist and filmmaker Charlie Ahearn, which documents the life-casting process for Bashira that took place outside his brother’s studio in the South Bronx.
Additional objects include a suite of 16 photographs by American artist Nancy Katz that depict significant figures across the worlds of art and design; a group of design objects by Hungarian-American artist Eva Ziesel; a commissioned photographic installation by Hunkpapa Lakota artist Dana Claxton; paintings by Egyptian artist Hend Samir and American artist Anthony Cudahy; a sculpture by Congolese artist Bodys Isek Kingelez; a sound sculpture by Ukraine-born artist Luba Drozd; a silk scroll of Guanyin by Chinese female artist Wang Shuhui; and paintings by 19th-century American women artists Lilla Cabot Perry, Louisa Davis Minot, and Laura Woodward.
“We are thrilled to bring this extraordinary group of works into the BMA’s collection, allowing us to share more nuanced and complicated narratives from across culture and the history of art. As we proceed in our work to diversify our holdings, we are particularly focused on ensuring that our collection speaks to global experiences through time and that we are continuing to support our own community, which is the source of broad and dynamic artistic innovation. We look forward to sharing these works with our audiences in the coming months and years,” said Asma Naeem, the BMA’s Dorothy Wagner Wallis Director. […]