The Smithsonian American Art Museum has extended the exhibition run of Between Worlds: The Art of Bill Traylor to April 7, following the federal government shutdown earlier this year. Two works from the Bethany Mission Gallery collection are on loan to the Smithsonian exhibition, which offers the most comprehensive look at the artist’s work to date.
Bill Traylor (ca. 1853–1949) is regarded today as one of the most important American artists of the twentieth century. A black man born into slavery in Alabama, he was an eyewitness to history: the Civil War, Emancipation, Reconstruction, Jim Crow segregation, the Great Migration, and the steady rise of African American urban culture in the South.
On February 22, in conjunction with the exhibition, the Smithsonian American Art Museum will host a one-day symposium featuring a distinguished group of scholars, including exhibition curator Leslie Umberger. The speakers will present new insights and information about how one man’s visual record of African American life gives larger meaning to the story of the nation.