For more than 50 years, Camille Billops and James V. Hatch have been stewards of African American history and memory. As artists, activists, and collectors the duo has been at the fore in raising awareness and concern about the "isms" (racism, classism, and ageism) embedded in the complex narratives that have shaped American culture, politics, and identities throughout American history.
With a curatorial department devoted solely to African art since 2001, the High's collection has grown to encompass the dynamic diversity of African art forms from ancient to contemporary. The heart of the collection includes sculptures from west and central Africa created between 1850 and 1950. Spotlight on Yoruba art, including masks, figurative sculpture, beadwork, metalwork and ceramic arts.
Features reference books, encyclopedias, non-fiction books, and history periodicals as well as thousands of historical documents, biographies of historical figures, photos, maps, and over 80 hours of historical video.