A Picture Gallery of the Soul

Katherine E. Nash Gallery, University of Minnesota

Coming this Fall

A Picture Gallery of the Soul

September 13 - December 10, 2022


Related Events
A companion exhibition of photographs made by Gordon Parks High School students will be on view September 13 - October 8 in the Quarter Gallery at Regis Center for Art. Learn more about the exhibition

Virtual Keynote | Thursday, September 15 | 6:30 pm | Online
Presentation with Prof. Deborah Willis, New York University
Registration required: https://z.umn.edu/Prof_Deborah_Willis

Opening Program | Thursday, September 22 | 6:00 – 7:00 pm | InFlux Space, Regis Center for Art
Presentation with the exhibition curators and visiting scholar lecture
Mining the Archive of Black Life and Culture, Prof. Cheryl Finley, Cornell University
Registration required: https://z.umn.edu/RegisRSVP

Public Reception | Thursday, September 22 | 7:00 – 9:00 pm | Katherine E. Nash Gallery
Come celebrate with the curators and visiting guests
RSVP required: https://z.umn.edu/RegisRSVP

Spoken Word Event | Wednesday, October 12 |12:15 pm|InFlux Space, Regis Center for Art
Program with Ty Chapman, Keno Evol, and Andrea Jenkins
Registration required: https://z.umn.edu/RegisRSVP

Writers Reading Event | Thursday, November 17 |12:15 pm|InFlux Space, Regis Center for Art
Program with Mary Easter, G.E. Patterson, and Davu Seru
Registration required: https://z.umn.edu/RegisRSVP

About the Exhibition
The Katherine E. Nash Gallery presents A Picture Gallery of the Soul, a group exhibition of over 100 Black American artists whose practice incorporates the photographic medium. Sampling a range of photographic expressions from traditional photography to mixed media and conceptual art and spanning a timeframe that includes the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries, the exhibition honors, celebrates, investigates, and interprets Black history, culture, and politics in the United States.


From the daguerreotypes made by Jules Lion in New Orleans in 1840 to the Instagram post of the Baltimore Uprising made by Devin Allen in 2015, photography has chronicled Black American life and Black Americans have defined the possibilities of photography. Frederick Douglass, a former enslaved person, and nationally prominent abolitionist recognized the quick, easy and inexpensive reproducibility of photography. He presciently developed a theoretical framework for understanding the implications of photography on public discourse in a series of four lectures. The exhibition title comes from Douglass' Lecture on Pictures, delivered in Boston in 1861 during the Civil War.


Artists in the Exhibition
Salimah Ali, Devin Allen, The Rev. Henry Clay Anderson, Jean Andre Antoine, Thomas E. Askew, Radcliffe Bailey, J. P. Ball, John L. Banks, Anthony Barboza, Ronald Barboza, Miranda Barnes, C. M. Battey, James “Jimmy” Baynes, Endia Beal, Arthur P. Bedou, Hugh Bell, Dawoud Bey, Mark Blackshear, Kwame Brathwaite, Sheila Pree Bright, George O. Brown, Nakeya Brown, Kesha Bruce, Crystal Z Campbell, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Micaiah Carter, Charles Chamblis, Vanessa Charlot, Albert Chong, Tiffany L. Clark, Mark Clennon, Tameca Cole, Florestine Perrault Collins, Bill Cottman, Adger Cowans, Gerald Cyrus, Louis Draper, Barbara DuMetz, Mara Duvra, John Edmonds, Dudley Edmondson, Cydni Elledge, Awol Erizku, Nona Faustine, Adama Delphine Fawundu, Al Fennar, Alanna Fields, Lola Flash, Krista Franklin, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Russell Frederick, Tia-Simone Gardner, Courtney Garvin, Bill Gaskins, John F. Glanton, Tony Gleaton, Goodridge Brothers, Kris Graves, Walter Griffin, Allison Janae Hamilton, Lucius W. Harper, Charles “Teenie” Harris, Daesha Devón Harris, L. Kasimu Harris, LeRoy Henderson, Jon Henry, Chester Higgins, Bobby Holland, Mildred Howard, Earlie Hudnall, Ayana V. Jackson, Frank Jackson, Leslie Jean-Bart, Rashid Johnson, Caroline Kent, Dionne Lee, Fern Logan, Stephen Marc, Robert H. McNeill, Ozier Muhammad, Nancy Musinguzi, Bruce Palaggi, Gordon Parks, Ebony G. Patterson, Howardena Pindell, John Pinderhughes, Carl Robert Pope, Jr., Deborah Roberts, Herb Robinson, Bobby Rogers, Keris Salmon, Keisha Scarville, Addison N. Scurlock, Paul Mpagi Sepuya, Jamel Shabazz, Harry Shepherd, Coreen Simpson, Lorna Simpson, Marvin and Morgan Smith, Ming Smith, Jovan C. Speller, Bruce W. Talamon, Elnora and Arthur Chester Teal, Hank Willis Thomas, Richard A. Twine, James Van Der Zee, Shawn Walker, Augustus Washington, Carrie Mae Weems, Carla Williams, Deborah Willis.

Exhibition Catalog

The exhibition catalog provides additional context on the connections between Black American history and culture and the photographic process. Co-published with University of California Press, the catalog includes a full-page image, statement, and biography for each artist in conjunction with essays by prominent scholars and artists Cheryl Finley, crystal am nelson, Seph Rodney, and Deborah Willis. The U of M Bookstore will have the book in stock this Fall.


The organizers gratefully acknowledge The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Phillip and Edith Leonian Foundation, Kate and Stuart Nielsen, Metropolitan Picture Framing, BluDot and The Givens Foundation for African American Literature, whose generous support has made this project possible.

The exhibition is organized by independent curator Herman J. Milligan, Jr. and Howard Oransky, Director of the Katherine E. Nash Gallery. It includes a display of related historical material curated by University Librarian Deborah Ultan and a program of recorded music curated by Herman J. Milligan, Jr.


The exhibition is co-sponsored by the Department of African American & African Studies, the Department of Art History, the Department of History, the Race, Indigeneity, Gender & Sexuality Studies Initiative, the Office for Public Engagement, the Imagine Fund, and the University Libraries, including the Archie Givens Sr. Collection of African American Literature.

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