Feature Articles

July 2013

Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture in Charlotte, NC, Offers Works from Kinsey Collection

To honor the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, Wells Fargo joins with the Harvey B. Gantt Center to display The Kinsey Collection: Shared Treasures of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey -Where Art and History Intersect. This exhibition, on view through Oct. 12, 2013, contains a collection of art and artifacts examining 400 years of the African-American experience, including an early copy of the Emancipation Proclamation.

“We are thrilled to bring the Kinsey Collection to the Gantt Center,” said David Taylor, Gantt Center President & CEO. “The Gantt Center serves as the perfect showcase for this inspirational collection. Our primary objective is to serve as a catalyst for African-American arts and education and we believe this collection fully embodies the spirit of African-American achievement and contribution.”

“Wells Fargo embraces the arts as a voice for history and culture,” said Kendall Alley, Community Banking Regional President for Charlotte. “We are proud to partner with the Gantt Center to present the Kinsey Collection as a way to share an important story involving the rich history of African Americans, a history of identity and struggle for equality that is both unique and shared by other diverse segments of our society. This connects directly with the vision and values of our company. Our goal is to help build strong and vibrant communities, improve the quality of life, and make a positive difference.”

The Kinsey Collection: Shared Treasures of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey, Where Art and History Intersect offers an insightful journey through centuries of African-American history, culture and heritage. This exhibition celebrates Bernard and Shirley Kinsey’s passion for collecting objects of extraordinary historical significance that tell the often untold story of African-American contribution and achievement. With education as the goal, the Kinsey Collection has been on national tour since 2007 and has been seen by over 3 million visitors. Presently, 40 of the Kinseys’ pieces are in the gallery of Disney’s Epcot American Adventure.

“The Kinsey Collection strives to give our ancestors a voice, name, and personality, enabling the viewer to understand the challenges, obstacles, triumphs and extraordinary sacrifice of African-Americans who’ve greatly contributed to the success of this country,” said Bernard Kinsey.

Through more than 40 years of marriage, Bernard and Shirley Kinsey have accumulated one of the largest private collections of African-American artifacts and artwork. The Kinsey Collection includes rare books, manuscripts, paintings, prints, sculpture, and photographs. Some of the most notable artifacts include letters by Zora Neale Hurston and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., correspondence between Malcolm X and Alex Haley, slave shackles, a first-edition copy of poems by Phillis Wheatley, a 1795 Bannaker’s Almanac, and 17th century slave documents. The Kinsey Collection also consists of works by renowned African-American artists such as Romare Bearden, Henry O. Tanner, Richmond Barthé, Lois Mailou Jones, Richard Mayhew, Artis Lane, and Jacob Lawrence.

Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.4 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 stores, 12,000 ATMs, and the Internet (wellsfargo.com), and has offices in more than 35 countries to support the bank’s customers who conduct business in the global economy. With more than 270,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 25 on Fortune’s 2013 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially.

Founded in 1974, Charlotte’s Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture (formerly the Afro-American Cultural Center) exists to present, preserve and celebrate the art, history and culture of African-Americans and those of African descent through dance, music, visual and literary arts, film, educational programs, theatre productions and community outreach. Named for Harvey B. Gantt, the prominent Charlotte architect and community leader and former Mayor of Charlotte, the Center is housed in an inspired and distinguished award-winning structure and is home to the nationally celebrated John and Vivian Hewitt Collection of African-American art.

For further information check our NC Institutional Gallery listings, call the Center at 704/547-3700 or visit (www.ganttcenter.org).

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