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, April 4, 2020

Beauford - Exhibitions Online

More and more museums are expanding opportunities to see works and even exhibitions online in the face of COVID-19. Today I want to remind you of one exhibition of Beauford’s work that was originally conceived for online viewing and share news of another that is being shared with the world via Facebook!

Beauford Delaney: A Study in Portraiture is an outstanding online study of Beauford's portraiture created by Maija Brennan, a senior at Smith College.

Maija curated the exhibition during her 2019 summer internship in Paris with the Wells International Foundation. She chose to examine a selection of portraits - including several self-portraits - from Beauford's Boston, New York, and Paris years. She included scholarly commentary for each segment of the exhibition and on each work presented. She also created a timeline of Beauford's life to put the entire presentation into context.

Beauford Delaney: A Study in Portraiture is available for viewing indefinitely. Click HERE to read more about the process behind the creation of the exhibition.

A few weeks ago, I wrote about Through the Unusual Door, the live exhibition that the Knoxville Museum of Art (KMA) mounted to explore the relationship between Beauford and James Baldwin.

Signage at Through the Unusual Door
Image by Les Amis de Beauford Delaney

Fortunately, the opening and a host of additional events honoring Beauford and Baldwin took place during the month of February, before COVID-19 became a pandemic. Hundreds of people came to see the exhibition throughout February and early March. But on March 16th, KMA announced that it would close until further notice. On the following day, it posted the following announcement on its Facebook page:

WE ARE BRINGING OUR NEWEST EXHIBITION TO YOU! Beauford Delaney and James Baldwin: Through the Unusual Door.

While you are at home please follow along with us every morning as we share this amazing story. We hope this brings a little brightness in this unsure time.

And so it begins... The story of Beauford Delaney born in Knoxville, Tennessee on December 30th, 1901 to Delia Johnson Delaney and the Reverend John Samuel Delaney, 815 East Vine Avenue. He was eighth of ten children. @VisitKnoxville #BringingBeaufordHome

Almost every day since then, the museum has published a post about some aspect of Beauford's or Baldwin's life path that includes one or more photographs or images of Beauford's art. All posts are being "liked" and shared.

This is a marvelous way to have the exhibition unfold!

KMA now expects to remained closed to the public until at least July 1. On April 3, I received the following information from Stephen Wicks, Barbara W. and Bernard E. Bernstein Curator at the museum:

"During this dark period we are trying everything we can to stay connected with the public and continue to celebrate the creative collaboration of Beauford Delaney and James Baldwin in this time of social isolation. With that in mind, we are hoping to release the exhibition catalog as a free e-book available on the museum’s website, the publisher UTPress’s website, and any lender’s website that would also like to feature the e-catalog."

Through the Unusual Door catalog cover

The print version of the catalog is superb, so news of the possibility of a free electronic version being released is more than welcome.

I hope you're staying close to home and will take the time to enjoy a virtual visit to both exhibitions. They will bring you joy!

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