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Drawing and Arts

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When I first started collecting and tried to learn about African art I had a select few books that I started out with to learn from. In the library of my old mentor was an encyclopedic collection of A

Drawing and Arts Description

When I first started collecting and tried to learn about African art I had a select few books that I started out with to learn from. In the
library of my old mentor was an encyclopedic collection of African Arts publications and once I found out about them I would put them
all on the floor and go through them one by one finding all of the ones with articles that were interesting to me at the time. Each time I
would do this there were articles that I revisited and ones that I hadn’t looked at previously that now grabbed my attention.

Over the years I have built up my own fairly encyclopedic collection (still missing a few issues) of African Arts publications and just
about once a month I’ll get them all out, set them on the floor and go through every one of them looking for articles that interest me now
or go through my index of the articles to locate a specific issue that has an article on a specific topic I’m trying to research at the time.
They continue to be a great resource for me and I’m sure will continue to be one for the future as they continue to publish articles that
are culture and object specific as well as venturing into the current and future state of African art.

In the first quarterly issue of 2007 (Spring 2007, Vol. 40, No. 1, Pages 1-5), Herbert M. Cole wrote a very nice article entitled “Forty
Years of African Arts” and below is an excerpt from the first paragraph of the article.

Forty Years of African Arts
by Herbert M. Cole

“Celebrate African Arts, now entering into its fortieth year! Launched ambitiously in 1967,
pledging a bilingual survey of all the traditional and contemporary arts—sculpture,
painting, architecture, poetry and other literature, theater, and dance—it made good on the
French/English promise for only three years, yet continued its broad arts coverage into the
1970s. The coverage of nonvisual arts became sporadic between 1975 and 1978, with only
occasional articles on them thereafter. Since the late 1970s, though, this journal has covered
a plethora of African and Africa-related subjects within the broad purview of visual,
performance, and ritual culture: archaeological, early, modern, and contemporary. In fact,
it has served to chronicle, in substantial detail and oft en with fine color illustrations, the
progress as well as the state of the African arts field since the late 1960s. Thirty-nine volumes
comprising 156 issues stretch to nearly four feet of shelf space as I write.

Other statistics tell more:
19,565 photographs (including objects in advertisements)
1,092 articles
624 books reviewed
468 exhibitions reviewed
16 private US collections highlighted
54 museum collections showcased
35 special issues on a single topic, 7 more as tributes”

The article continues for a total of 5 pages and below is the end of the article…

“In the years since this publication first appeared in 1967 we
have learned that change in African arts, plus invention and creativity, are all endemic and
vital, and that they always have been. It is up to the readers of African Arts to ensure that it
will survive to chronicle what is now and continues to be happening, and changing, in the
arts of the vast African continent (and its diasporas), as well as to examine critically earlier
art forms and the writing on them.”

Herbert M. Cole
Herbert Cole is emeritus professor of art history at UC Santa Barbara. His major publications include Icons: Ideals and Power in the Art of Africa,
1989; Igbo Arts: Community and Cosmos, 1984 (with C.C. Aniakor) and The Arts of Ghana (with Doran H. Ross), 1977

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