Game Changers: The Art of Black History Highlights Samella Lewis [VIDEO + PHOTO]

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On the last day of Black History month, we’d like to shine a light on legendary artist Dr. Samella Lewis. The New Orleans based artist is a prominent figure in African American, as she founded the Museum of African American Arts in 1976. She has won many awards for her work over the years.

Growing up in the 1920’s in New Orleans wasn’t even for Lewis. She looked to art as an outlet; her work would focus on real life things such as police brutality against African Americans. She began her educational career at Dillard University in New Orleans, and later transferred to Hampton Institute which is now known as Hampton University- after two years. Ultimately she went on to earn a master’s as well as a doctorate degree in art history. She graduated from Ohio State University. She then became an associate professor at what is now known as Morgan State University. As her journey continued, she spent 5 years as the chair of the fine arts department at Florida A&M University.

Dr. Lewis art is most known for her many series of lithographs, and screen prints. Aside from prints, she also produced paintings and sculptures during the course of her career. In 1969, Dr. Lewis became the education coordinator at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. She soon resigned from that position and went on to open three galleries in LA. She also founded LA’s Museum of African American art in 1976, and worked as senior curator until 1986.

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The career of Samella Lewis spans some seventy years and has taken her to many parts of the world. As an art historian and scholar, her knowledge is boundless and accessible. As an artist, Lewis remains at the forefront of her field. As a collector, she has amassed an impressive and diverse collection that includes African American, Asian, Caribbean, Native American, South American and African Arts. As a social and community activist, she will serve as a reference for generations to come. • • • #drsamellalewis #samellalewis #art #historicalart #arthistory #womenartists #womenempowerment #africanamericanart #blackart #blackartist #africanart #asianart #nativeamericanart #caribbianart #southamericanart #hamptonuniversity #neworleansart #lousiana #neworleanslouisiana #lousianaartist #drawing #drawings #drawingsketch #paint #paintings #paint #sculpture #sculptures #printmaking #prints

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Dr. Samella Lewis broke boundaries, and set the tone for many artist to follow. She created a space where it was safe for artist to create visuals as representations of African American struggles. She also fought for more diversity in the art scene for African American artist. She is history.