Art School Africa

Sarah Clunis: Cultural Innovation

Sarah Clunis: Cultural Innovation

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Sarah Clunis gives insight into how we can use art and curation as a powerful tool to connect Africans and their descendants. As a case study, she looks specifically at an exhibition which she curated titled ICONS: Ideals of Black Masculinity including artists from Africa and its diaspora. 


Sarah Clunis is originally from Kingston, Jamaica and received her PhD in art history in 2006 from the University of Iowa. She is the Director of Academic Partnerships and Curator of the African Collection at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology at Harvard University.

She has taught art history and curated for over twenty years at public universities and historically Black colleges and universities. Her research, classes, and exhibitions have focused on the history of African and African Diaspora art and display in western museum settings and the influence of African aesthetics and philosophies on the arts, religious rituals and cultural identities of the African diaspora.

Her current research documents the artistic traditions and oral histories of the Geechee community of Sapelo Island, Georgia. Clunis is committed to work that centers oral histories, indigenous scholarship, descendant communities, and the repatriation of cultural property. 

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