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Draper: the Vision of Romare Bearden

Wanda Draper

I’m Wanda Draper, executive director of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum. For generations visual artists have told stories of American history and culture and Romare Bearden was at the forefront of his time. He was a visionary artist who used a variety of media to showcase his influence as an artist of social conscience. Bearden encountered racial stereotypes with images drawn from history, literature, the Bible and the free world of his imagination.

An upcoming exhibit 'Romare Bearden Visionary Artist' features his works and examines how he agitated for change throughout his prolific career creating amazing images. Included are a diverse collection of original collage, watercolor, limited edition prints, reproductions, and rare archival items. Also magazine covers and editorial cartoons done while he was employed right here at the Baltimore AFRO-American Newspapers from 1935 to 1937.

Since then, we have seen tremendous change socially, politically and culturally in Baltimore, in Maryland, and across the country and yet today we appear to be as much, if not more, divided than we were 50 years ago. For that reason. The Lewis Museum is exhibiting this Romare Bearden collection from November 10 through March 3, 2019. No matter race, religion or ethnicity, we are more alike than we are different.

The Lewis Museum is a safe environment to appreciate amazing art and have the difficult discussions about why our country is so divided and more importantly, how we can come together.