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Arts of the African Americas and Africa New Lecture Series at Springfield Museums

SPRINGFIELD, MA—The Springfield Museumsis proud to present an exciting new lecture series. Here +54: From the Smithsonian to Soweto, Arts of the African Americas and Africa, presented by Kymberly S. Newberry, begins September 28, 2021, and runs through November 16, 2021. Lectures are available in person or via Zoom from 6:30 pm–8:00 pm weekly on Tuesdays. The cost is $140 for nonmembers and $120 for members. To register please visit:

This eight-part lecture series is an introduction to the visual art production of African American artists and makers, as well as an introduction to the visual art of the African Diaspora. “Here +54” is an ode to African American art and the visual art and material culture of the 54 countries on the African continent, said Newberry. “In a time when issues of representation are so pressing, a recent survey of major American museums revealed that only 1.2% of artists in collections are African American,” she said.


This lecture series offers an opportunity for participants to better understand and embrace African American and African Diasporan visual expression. “Across the globe, this remarkable art has been an instrumental agent of triumph and change,” said Paige Moreau, Museum School coordinator.


The classes alternate lectures and masterclasses which feature a discussion with a noted scholar, art historian, or curator, with emphasis on a particular exhibition or genre of African American or African Diasporian cultural expression that reflects their scholarly focus and expertise:


  • September 28 –Sir David Adjaye, Black architects and The National Museum of African American History and Culture
  • October 5 –Masterclass: Dr. Kimberly Juanita Brown discusses Carrie Mae Weems, Roaming, 2006
  • October 12 –Polaroid & Apartheid and the Role of Photography in the Decolonization of West Africa
  • October 19 –Masterclass: Dr. Christa Clarke Discusses: The Gilded Age Revisited: Yinka Shonibare CBE at the Newark Museum
  • October 26 –Black Women in the Works of the Impressionists and Contemporary Multimedia Artist Mickalene Thomas
  • November 2 –Masterclass: Dr. Allen F. Roberts Discusses: “Brainsmithing”: The Art of Senegalese Artists Ndary Lô, Viyé Diba, and Moussa Tine
  • November 9 –Seeing This Makes Me Sweat Big Drops: Dilemmas in Curating/Translating African Art in American Art Museums
  • November 16 –Masterclass: Dr. James Smethurst Discusses: The Black Arts Movement


This lecture series is presented by the Museum School. The Museum School at the Museums has been providing educational and cultural enrichment for people of all ages since 1918. The program began with studio art instruction and has expanded to include the areas of science, art history, creative writing, genealogy and history. The programs offered represent the rich and diverse resources and collections at the Museums and are led by dedicated staff and faculty.


Co-sponsored by Life Lessons: The Wm. & Margery Sadowsky Center for Adult Learning at the Springfield JCC., One Admission/Five Museums,

including the one and only Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum

Parking is always FREE


About The Springfield Museums


THE SPRINGFIELD MUSEUMS are located on the Quadrangle at 21 Edwards Street in the heart of downtown Springfield, Massachusetts. The nationally accredited and Smithsonian-affiliated consortium of museums includes the Springfield Science Museum, the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts, the Lyman and Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History, the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum, the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, and the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum, the first and only museum dedicated to the beloved children’s book author and Springfield native.



Tuesday-Saturday: 10 am to 5 pm

Sunday: 11 am to 5 pm


Protocols include

  • Masks are required for visitors age 2 and up.
  • Advance tickets are strongly encouraged. Please visit the Tickets page.


The Hanmer Museum Store

Tuesday-Saturday: 10 am to 5 pm

Sunday: 11 am to 5 pm


The Blake House Café

Open daily 11 am to 4 pm


For More Information:

Karen Fisk, Director of Marketing and Communication Strategy

413-263-6800, ext. 459