NSU to host 15th annual African Art Exhibit

NSU will host its 15th annual African Art exhibit from Feb. 8 to March 12 in the Alvin Sherman Library Cotilla Gallery in celebration of Black History Month. The exhibit will be unveiled at 8 p.m. on the opening day.

This year’s theme will be “Back to Black,” a celebration of African diaspora influence on art and culture.

“We are attempting to explore the notion and concept of blackness, and what it means to be black at a time when the notion of race and ethnicity are being questioned again,” said Babacar Mbow, curator of the Back to Black exhibit. “We wanted to explore how these black artists provide answers to these questions through their works.”

The pieces will be diverse, from their medium to the location they were created, according to Mara Kiffin, director in the division of public relations and marketing communications. Sculptures, tapestries, paintings and fabrics will all be featured at the exhibit.

“There will be works specifically with sculptures, but using fabrics,” explained Mbow. “It’s interesting to see the ways in which fabric becomes a medium for expression to these artists.”

Among the rest of the artwork, paintings from Cuban-American artists who were recently featured in NSU’s downtown art museum will also be on display.

An opening reception will be held in the Don Taft University Center from 6:30-8:30 p.m., which will include entertainment and refreshments. In the past, the activities have ranged from different forms of music, to a show of natural hairstyles, to hair-wrapping. This year, the featured event will be a fashion show that highlights the beauty of african culture and how it appears in both classic and european or contemporary clothing.

“It’s going to be fashions through the decades — there’s going to be white people in it, black people, hispanic, everything,” said Kiffin. “Some people will be wearing african fashions, different fashions and styles through the decades. It’ll be a really fun time.”

Kiffin said she encourages everyone to attend the ceremony and fashion show, regardless of age or culture.

“It’s going to be a fun experience. It’s going to be educational and informative. I hope it’s stimulating,” said Kiffin. “I hope it stimulates [those in attendance] to learn more about a different decade.”

The reception is free and open to the public, but space is limited. To RSVP or for more information about the event, call 954-262-5357.

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