The Hall Center for the Humanities will present a lecture titled “Beyond Harlem and Modernism: Aaron Douglas and Art History” by art historian Susan Earle at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 26 at the Wichita Art Museum.


The Hall Center for the Humanities will present a lecture titled “Beyond Harlem and Modernism: Aaron Douglas and Art History” by art historian Susan Earle at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 26 at the Wichita Art Museum.

This event is made possible by the support of the Lattner Family Foundation and is co-sponsored by the KU Alumni Association and its Wichita Chapter. The Wichita Public Library is also a partner.

Earle's lecture will survey the work of Kansas native Aaron Douglas, the foremost visual artist of the Harlem Renaissance. In her illustrated presentation, she will trace the artist's roots, his collaborations with luminaries in Harlem in the 1920s and ’30s, his role as a graphic designer and mural painter of the “New Negro” and his lasting impact on the art and cultural heritage of the nation.

Earle also will discuss the process of organizing the first-ever touring retrospective of the artist's work, “Aaron Douglas: African American Modernist.” The exhibition, supported by the Henry Luce Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, opened at the Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas in September 2007 and has since traveled to museums in Nashville, Washington, D.C., and New York. An accompanying book was published by Yale University Press.

A scholar of 19th-century and contemporary art, Earle is curator of European and American Art at the Spencer Museum of Art at The University of Kansas and a courtesy assistant professor in the History of Art Department at KU. She taught previously at New York University and was a research assistant at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Earle has organized more than 30 exhibitions, held a Curatorial Research Fellowship from the Getty Foundation and received an Outstanding Educator Award from the Kansas Torch Chapter of Mortar Board Senior Honor Society.

Earle earned a bachelor of arts degree with distinction in English and art history at Williams College in Massachusetts, and a master of arts and doctorate in art history at the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University.

For more information, contact the Hall Center at hallcenter@ku.edu or call (785) 864-4798.