CHESTERTOWN, MD – The Department of Art and Art History, Kohl Gallery, the Black Studies Program and the Gender Studies Program present, “The Photographer’s Eye: Constance Stuart Larrabee’s Images of the Ndebele Peoples (South Africa)”, a lecture by Christraud Geary, Teel Senior Curator of African and Oceanic Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to be held on Thursday, March 25, 5:30 p.m., in the Casey Academic Forum. The event is free, and the public is invited to attend. There will be a reception immediately following Dr. Geary’s presentation, sponsored by Phi Beta Kappa, Theta of Maryland.
The lecture follows the exhibition in the Kohl Gallery of Larrabee’s early photos, including images of the Ndebele peoples, curated by Washington College Senior Riley Carbonneau (art and art history/sociology), which fell during both Black History Month and Women’s History Month.
A leading scholar of African art, Geary received a DPhil in Cultural Anthropology and African Studies from the University of Frankfurt, Germany, and has done extensive fieldwork in Africa--in Mali, Cameroon, Senegal and South Africa. Her trip to Ghana involved her inviting the King of the Asante to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Geary has lectured widely, and has published numerous, highly acclaimed books and exhibition catalogues, including Material Journeys: Collecting African and Oceanic Art, 1945-2000, In and Out of Focus: Images from Central Africa 1885-1960, and The Voyage of King Njaya’s Gift: A Beaded Sculpture from the Bamum Kingdom, Cameroon, in the National Museum of African Art.
Geary’s two trips to South Africa were made in connection with her research on Constance Stuart Larrabee, specifically the numerous photos the latter took of the Ndebele peoples, while living in nearby Pretoria. During Geary’s tenure as Curator of the Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African Art, she accepted the gift of over 3000 photographs that Larrabee left to the archive; traveled to Chestertown on several occasions, and curated the exhibition “South African 1936-1949: Photography of Constance Stuart Larrabee.”