Item #1733 Primitive Negro Art, Chiefly from the Belgian Congo. Stewart Culin.
Scarce Illustrated Catalog of the First Major Exhibition of African Art in America

Primitive Negro Art, Chiefly from the Belgian Congo.

Brooklyn: Brooklyn Museum, 1923. Illustrated with 8 photographic plates. First Edition. In publisher’s illustrated wrappers. 42 p., and 8 plates. In fine condition.

A rare copy of this important catalog for the iconic and first major exhibition of African art in America.

In 1903, Stewart Culin (1858–1929) became the founding curator of the Department of Ethnology at the Museum of the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences, now the Brooklyn Museum. He was among the first museum curators to display ethnological collections as art objects, not as ethnographic specimens, and among the first to recognize museum installation as an art form in its own right. He made his intentions clear in the catalog's introductory essay: “The entire collection, whatever may have been its original uses, is shown under the classification of art; as representing a creative impulse, and not for the purpose of illustrating the customs of African peoples”.

The exhibition of Primitive Negro Art opened in April 1923, and based in large part on Culin’s collection which became in turn the basis for the Brooklyn Museum’s collection.

WorldCat locates only 2 copies in institutional holdings (NGA Library, Washington; Kunstbibliothek Berlin), besides those the Brooklyn Museum also holds a copy.


Price: €7,000.00

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