LECTURE Amazigh Women’s Arts: Visual Expressions of Berber Identity Friday, January 20, 1:30 pm
The Amazigh people (Berbers) are indigenous to North Africa. In Berber culture, women play a central role in creating the aesthetic and symbolic forms that make Amazigh identity unique—and they achieve considerable status and respect. Motherhood is highly esteemed by the Berbers, and women incorporate symbols and colors that relate to fertility into their textiles, clothing, tattoos, and hairstyles as expressions of female agency. In this lecture, Cynthia Becker, Associate Professor in the History of Art and Architecture Department at Boston University, considers the artistic legacy of the Berbers within North African history by examining the creative output of Amazigh women. Despite societal influences that have changed daily life in Berber communities, women continue to produce and use art inspired by ancestral forms—especially during rural weddings—demonstrating the crucial role women play in preserving Amazigh heritage. Presented in conjunction with the newly reinstalled Laura and James J. Ross Gallery of African Art. Generously sponsored by the Martin A. Ryerson Fund.
LECTURE The Astonishing Richness of Igbo Art: Beauties, Beasts, and Others Thursday, January 26, 5:30 pm
Igbo arts, made by the Igbo people of West Africa in more than 200 village groups that were never centralized, are enormously diverse in style and type. In this lecture, Herbert M. Cole, Professor Emeritus, University of Santa Barbara, California, addresses this variety—which is especially evident in masks—by exploring two of the common threads in masking traditions among many Igbo subgroups: the dynamic interplay of Beauties and Beasts. Thanks to the bequest of Charles B. Benenson, B.A. 1933, the Yale University Art Gallery has a rich collection of Igbo art objects, some of which are addressed in the lecture. Presented in conjunction with the newly reinstalled Laura and James J. Ross Gallery of African Art. Followed by a reception. Generously sponsored by the Martin A. Ryerson Fund.
AFRICAN ART PROGRAMS Celebrating the new installation of the Laura and James J. Ross Gallery of African Art
In January and February, the Gallery presents a series of programs highlighting the African art collection, in celebration of its new installation and new location on the first floor of the museum. Programs include lectures, gallery talks, a film series, and more. Visit the Gallery and pick up a programs card for a full list of events, or click on the link below. All programs are free and open to the public.
Images: View of the newly reinstalled Laura and James J. Ross Gallery of African Art, Yale University Art Gallery | Unidentified Berber artist, Woman’s Headshawl (Mendil), Tunisia, Matmata Mountains, Tamezret or Toujout, mid-20th century. Wool, cotton, natural dyes, silk, and rayon or synthetic yarn. Yale University Art Gallery, Leonard C. Hanna, Jr., Class of 1913, Fund | Herbert M. Cole, also known as the woodcarver Kofi Cole, holding a Mamy Wata sculpture that he carved for a shrine on Long Island, New York. Photo: Macduff Everton | Image courtesy Yale University Art Gallery Graphic Design Department