September 30 - December 30, 2023
The Carnegie Arts Center in Turlock opening a major new exhibition in September: Memories & Inspiration: The Kerry and C. Betty Davis Collection of African American Art. Celebrating the passion of an ordinary couple who became devoted connoisseurs, building a collection of vivid artworks that are both resonant and remarkably personal, Memories & Inspiration is on a nationwide tour, organized by International Arts & Artists, and will be on view at the CAC from September 30 - December 30, 2023.
The exhibition presents 67 carefully selected works from a collection amassed over 35 years. Kerry, a retired mailman, and Betty, a former television news producer, gladly gave up many ordinary comforts in order to live with extraordinary artwork as their principal luxury. Their collection includes works from the 1930s to the present by such influential figures as Romare Bearden, Elizabeth Catlett, Sam Gilliam, Jacob Lawrence, Gordon Parks, and Alma Thomas, but Kerry and Betty do not search exclusively for well-known artists. Rather, they focus on gathering a range of artistic approaches representing the Black image and experience.
Memories & Inspiration: The Kerry and C. Betty Davis Collection of African American Art was organized and toured by International Arts & Artists, Washington, DC
and is sponsored by:
Sedrick Huckaby, She Wore Her Family’s Quilt, 2015, oil on canvas. Photograph by Gregory Staley. © Sedrick Huckaby.
Sam Gilliam, Untitled, 1974, oil acrylic on rice paper. Photograph by Gregory Staley. Courtesy of David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. © Sam Gilliam.
Louisa Benhissen, Rituals of Celebration: Central Valley, CA, oil on canvas, 2020
© the artist
October 17, 2023 through January 13, 2024
California boasts a diverse array of cultural traditions, from our many indigenous cultures to those of immigrants and refugees who have settled here. Culture can be a connection between our past and our future, and it is something many of us incorporate into the way we live our lives today. Some collect, preserve, and cherish their heritage through family heirlooms. Others have deep connections to their roots through cultural traditions or practices. Some wear their heritage every day as a defining characteristic of who they are. Through this exhibition, Telling Out Stories, we want artists to tell the stories of their culture or heritage. How do we interpret, represent, and perhaps even struggle with our cultural past? How do we define and express our heritage, both publicly and privately?