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Modern African-American art gets the spotlight

John Biggers’s “Shotgun, Third Ward #1,” a 1966 tempera and oil, is among the works that have come to Salem from the Smithsonian American Art Museum.
John Biggers’s “Shotgun, Third Ward #1,” a 1966 tempera and oil, is among the works that have come to Salem from the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

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In Conversation: Modern African American Art” comes to the Peabody Essex Museum just as interest in art by black Americans is – belatedly – bubbling to the surface in New England.

The Museum of Fine Arts has been beefing up its holdings of artworks, and earlier this year mounted its first ever retrospective of an African-American artist.

The Danforth Museum of Art has put on solo displays by pioneering artists John Wilson and Meta Warwick Fuller.

Institutions such as the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art and the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum have tapped into contemporary African-American visions.

As the first New England-area museum to present a survey of modern African-American art, the Peabody Essex exhibition helps to congeal these efforts.

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IN CONVERSATION: Modern African American Art

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