Les Amis de Beauford Delaney is supporting the completion of


the first full-length documentary about Beauford.

Join us in making this video tribute to Beauford a reality!



Saturday, February 15, 2020

Knoxville Continues to Celebrate Beauford - What's Coming Next

I'm back in Paris after visiting Knoxville for the FABULOUS opening of Beauford Delaney and James Baldwin: Through the Unusual Door.

Banners bearing Beauford's image line the streets around the Knoxville Museum of Art.

Banners near the Knoxville Museum of Art
© Les Amis de Beauford Delaney

Signage on the façade of the museum announces the exhibition.

What's on at the Knoxville Museum of Art
© Les Amis de Beauford Delaney

Inside, a enlarged photo of Beauford and James Baldwin walking down a Paris avenue greets visitors.

Monique Y. Wells and photo of James Baldwin and Beauford Delaney
Image courtesy of the Knoxville Museum of Art

The museum was packed for the VIP preview of the exhibition and the excitement of the attendees was palpable.

Attendees at VIP Preview of Through the Unusual Door
Image courtesy of the Knoxville Museum of Art

The exhibition itself is exquisite!

Exhibition rooms for Through the Unusual Door
© Les Amis de Beauford Delaney

It has whetted the appetite of Knoxville's citizens for the next big celebration of the lives and work of Beauford and Baldwin - the University of Tennessee Knoxville's symposium entitled "In a Speculative Light."

Banners for "In a Speculative Light" on campus
at the University of Tennessee Knoxville
Photo courtesy of Amy J. Elias, Ph.D.
Director, University of Tennessee Humanities Center

Originally planned as a closed event, UT Humanities Center director and conference organizer Amy Elias has now opened the symposium to the public due to popular demand. Entry is free.

For additional access, most of the sessions will be livestreamed.

The keynote speaker, NYU professor Fred Moten, will discuss Beauford's painting in relation to Baldwin's writing and Elvin Jones' theory of music on Thursday, February 20, at 3:30 pm in the UTK Student Union Auditorium.

The complete schedule for this three-day event can be found here:


"In a Speculative Light: The Portrait Project" is an innovative addition to the symposium that honors Beauford's love of portraiture. Four artists - Jered Sprecher, Joshua Bienko, Rubens Ghenov, and Mary Laube - have offered to create portraits of symposium speakers, who will be asked to sit for their sessions in a pop-up studio in the UT Student Union.

During the week of February 17, visitors to campus will be able to view an exhibition called "The Paris Years: Paintings by Beauford Delaney from the Artist’s Estate" at the Student Union Art Gallery on the UT campus.

This show is being organized by Derek Spratley, Esq., the executor of the Beauford Delaney estate, to give the public and UT students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to see original Delaney artwork that will be available for purchase after the close of the exhibition.

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