Los Angeles County Museum of Art Names Dr. Mary (Polly) Nooter Roberts Consulting Curator of African Art

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) has named Dr. Mary (Polly) Nooter Roberts Consulting Curator of African Art to help launch a program and establish a gallery dedicated to the arts of Africa. Dr. Roberts is Professor of World Arts and Cultures at UCLA, and will continue her full-time teaching position while consulting for LACMA. She was Senior Curator of the Museum for African Art in New York from 1984–1994 and Deputy Director and Chief Curator of the Fowler Museum at UCLA from 1999-2008. Additionally, she was a guest curator at LACMA for the 2008 exhibition Tradition as Innovation in African Art.

The goal of Dr. Roberts’s appointment is to bring greater visibility to African arts in Southern California, while creating programmatic linkages between LACMA and UCLA. As LACMA CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director Michael Govan states, “We have looked forward to launching a program for African art for several years and the timing seems right. We are excited to work with Polly Nooter Roberts as we explore new ways of understanding and presenting the richness of African artistic expression.”

African Art at LACMA
LACMA’s growing collection of African art is diverse in form, material, and purpose. Works include masks and figures of wood and ivory, metalwork, textiles, beaded crowns, stools, and body adornments. Notable in the collection are a bronze plaque depicting a seventeenth-century official of the Benin Kingdom; a boli figure from Mali; and a selection of works from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Explore the collection online at www.lacma.org/art/collection/african-art

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