See the best works from an impressive private collection in “Sub-Saharan African Art from the Collection of Matthew Scheiner and Lisa Qualls.” The husband-and-wife team has lent Lone Star College works from Cameroon, Congo, Mali, and Nigeria – some dating as far back as the 18th century.
“I have loved sub-Saharan African art since I was a kid,” said Scheiner via email. “I was drawn to the rooms at the Smithsonian and the Met that held their collections. It was a combination of power and beauty in these objects that intrigued me. My interest turned into passion over the years.”
Some of the choice pieces on display include a Nimba shrine from the Baga people of Guinea. The large Nimba shoulder masks are renowned for their form and presence (Pablo Picasso collected them). Unlike most Nimba masks, the one in the Scheiner/Qualls collection was not meant to me worn during ritual dances, but to be worshipped as a standalone icon. Other sculptures and textiles in the exhibition are also of a spiritual nature, but many works are more practical creations such as stools.
“African art has a tactile aspect that differentiates it from Western art,” said Scheiner. “Objects are meant to be handled. This enables a level of interaction and appreciation as you hold an object, and sense the intimacy of the object to the culture that created it and handled it before you.”
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Regular gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Through January 10. Lone Star College (North Harris Fine Arts Gallery), 2700 W. W. Thorne Dr. For information, call 281-618-5617 or visit lonestar.edu/16365. Free.
Mondays-Fridays, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Starts: Dec. 2. Continues through Jan. 10, 2013