ICS: Giotto in the Tropics, Lecture on Arturo A. Schomburg and Black Atlantic Painters

As part of its Conferencias Caribeñas 6 lecture series, the Institute of Caribbean Studies (ICS) of the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras invites the academic community and the general public to the lecture “Giotto in the Tropics: Arturo A. Schomburg’s Unfinished Book on Black Atlantic Painters” by Dr. César Salgado (Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of Texas-Austin). Dr Dolores Aponte Ramos (Department of Spanish, UPR-RP), will serve as commentator. The lecture will take place on Thursday, March 11, 2010, 1:00pm – 3:00n at Amphitheater CRA 108 (Carmen Rivera de Alvarado Building), School of Social Sciences, University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras.

This lecture reflects on Arthur A. Schomburg’s Afrocentric collection strategies by analyzing published and unpublished materials related to his unfinished book project on Renaissance and post-Renaissance Black Atlantic painters such as Sebastián Gómez, Juan de Pareja, José Campeche, and Pastor Argudín y Pedroso. It discusses his 1926 tour of European museums (with Alain Locke) in search of art by and about Afro-descendants and its repercussions on his Afro-Diasporic thought and archival practices in the context of the Harlem Renaissance. It reviews several of his typescripts on Black artists and reflects on the prominence of Campeche—Schomburg’s “tropical Giotto”—in his Black Atlantic artistic canon. Questions considered: If fashioning an archive is latently meant to structure documentation to be used in an ideal book, what does Schomburg’s book project say about his archival acquisition choices? Did he promote Afro-Hispanism over Pan-Africanism as an ethnic doctrine at the end of his career?

For further information, you may call Dr. Humberto García Muñiz, Director, at (787) 764-0000, extension 4212, or write to iec@uprrp.edu

José Campeche’s painting “El exvoto de la Sagrada Familia” from http://www.icp.gobierno.pr/galeria/campeche/obra1.htm

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