african-mask_web.jpg“Around the world, art has served to legitimize and to bolster the authority of those who rule or lead. A wide range of political systems developed over the continent of Africa ranging from lineage groups
to autonomous villages to chiefdoms to kingdoms and even to large empires in the past.”

– Passage from African exhibit at Nova Southeastern University DAVIE – Exquisite artwork and intricately designed artifacts depicting concepts of power from the rich continent of Africa are on display at Nova Southeastern University.

To celebrate Black History Month, NSU has set up its annual art exhibit titled, “Power Revealed.’’

Through March 18, the exhibit is in the Second Floor Gallery of the Alvin Sherman Library, Research, and Information Technology Center at NSU’s main campus in Davie.

“We are extremely proud to put this (exhibit) on,’’ said George L. Hanbury II, Ph.D., the university’s executive vice president/COO. “You can just recognize the history, culture and impact that has been made in our civilization simply by the crafts and the artwork in this exhibit. It allows us to take pride in our diversity, which in turn makes us strong as a country.”

Hanbury said the exhibit not only demonstrates the university’s efforts to raise cultural awareness, but also the university’s commitment to a worldly wise education.

Aspiring to artistically depict an entire continent with many cultures, languages, customs and religions, “Power Revealed” makes a successful attempt at demonstrating the relevance of power in Africa.

The significance of each item, ranging from the hand-carved masks and statues, jewelry and utensils to the ceremonial objects all exemplify the various aspects of power represented in African culture.

Within the exhibit, one can experience the physical, spiritual, temporal, masculine and feminine characteristics of African power.

Robin Poynor, Ph.D., guest curator for the exhibit, has studied the art of Africa for more than 40 years, having completed initial fieldwork in Nigeria as a Fulbright Hays Fellow.

Poynor’s dissertation, The Ancestral Arts of Owo, Nigeria, addressed the arts associated with death and dying, and the ancestral veneration among the Owo Yoruba, with subsequent work in Sierra Leone.

He currently teaches the arts of Africa and Oceania at the School of Art and Art History at the University of Florida. His expertise helped the collection of works for this exhibit truly define power in the most authentic sense.

“We chose objects that we could share that had meaning behind their creation and were ultimately all similar in the way that they made the concept of power visible,” Poynor said.

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IF YOU GO

WHAT:  “Power Revealed’’ African Art Exhibit 2009.

WHERE: Nova Southeastern University’s Second Floor Gallery at the Alvin Sherman Library,  Research, and Information Technology Center, 3100 Ray Ferrero Jr. Blvd., Davie.

WHEN: Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.  to 9 p.m.; Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sundays from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

COST: FREE and open to the public.

CONTACT: Visit www.nova.edu/blackhistory or call 954-262-5309.