September 18, 2008

Artwork by Professor Curlee Holton Recognized Internationally

Prints included in permanent collections of Yale University and the American Embassy in Dakar, Senegal

Original works by Curlee Raven Holton, professor and head of art and director of Lafayette’s Experimental Printmaking Institute, have been inducted into permanent collections.

A 1994 piece entitled Bred For Pleasure is now part of Yale University’s Art Gallery collection. Bred For Pleasure and 2007 creation, Legacy, have also been accepted by the American ambassador’s residence in Dakar, Senegal, as part of the Art in Embassies Program. Marcia Bernicat ’75 currently serves as ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau.

Legacy, which was produced in a limited-edition of 100, celebrates the College’s first African American graduate, David Kearney McDonogh 1844. Proceeds from sales of this fine art print supported the recently installed sculpture honoring McDonogh. This sculpture, created by internationally renowned sculptor Melvin Edwards, is located on the north side of Skillman Library and is fittingly titled Transcendence. Lafayette will host a dedication ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 27 at 10 a.m.

Recently printed as an edition of 10, Bred For Pleasure addresses a dark period in American history. “The piece illustrates the breeding of Mulattos for the consumption of slave owners. It shows the change of complexion and features as the African female is transformed in an effort to make her appear more Anglo, yet not quite Anglo enough to be mistaken as white,” says Holton.

Professor Holton is pleased to be recognized professionally while maintaining his own creative integrity. He notes, “Both works are consistent with my efforts to create art inspired by my personal narrative in addition to having universal implications common to all of humanity.”

“As an artist one must choose a subject to respond to, and one must also find a voice to express that subject. I have sought to find both a subject that deserves attention and a voice that presents my chosen subject with integrity and passion,” explains Holton.

  • Sculpture Commemorating Granting of Degree to Slave David McDonogh 1844 Will be Dedicated Sept. 27
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