Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas


Haitian Art from the Hughes Collection
  • Haitian Art from the Hughes Collection
  • 07-Jul-2007 - 16-Sep-2007
  • North Balcony, Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas

While in Haiti working for the United States International Communications Agency between 1972 and 1976, Mary Lou and Harry Hughes developed a deep admiration for the arts and artists of Haiti, building a collection of well over 90 works. Prior to their assignment in Haiti, the Hughes were assigned to Dahomey (now the Republic of Benin), where Mary Lou acquired a knowledge of and sensitivity to the African aesthetic that permeates Haitian art. Haitian Art from the Hughes Collection covers the range of Haiti’s leading painters and sculptors, including Rigaud Benoît, Murat Brierre, Célestin Faustin, Jasmin Joseph, Philomé Obin, André Pierre, and Robert St. Brice. The Hughes Collection includes a variety of styles, depicting historical and religious subjects and scenes of nature and everyday life.

Works from the collection have been included in exhibitions at the Musée d'Art du Collège Saint Pierre, Port-au-Prince Haiti; The Brooklyn Museum, The Milwaukee Art Center; Ramapo College of New Jersey; Northern Virginia Community College, Alexandria; Davenport Museum of Art; New Orleans Museum of Art; Staatliche Kunsthalle, Berlin; City Hall, Washington D.C. and in many publications, for example Ute Stebich’s Haitian Art and Seldon Rodman’s Where Art is Joy, Haitian Art: the First Forty Years.

Organized by Amanda Martin-Hamon, the Spencer’s Public Outreach and Special Events Coordinator and Sean Barker, Education Intern.