Bill Cosby to loan art collection to Smithsonian

Bill Cosby and his wife, Camille, plan to showcase their extensive collection of African-American art for the first time in an exhibition at the Smithsonian Institution.


The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art says Monday that the entire Cosby collection will go on view in November in an exhibit juxtaposing African-American art with African art.


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The collection includes works by such leading artists as Faith Ringgold, Jacob Lawrence, Augusta Savage and Henry Ossawa Tanner. The Cosby collection of more than 300 African-American paintings, prints, sculptures and drawings has never been loaned or seen publicly, except for one work of art.

Cosby is a Philadelphia native and longtime supporter of Temple University.

Museum Director Johnnetta Betsch Cole says the project recognizes the shared history linking Africa and the African diaspora.

“Conversations: African and African-American Artworks in Dialogue” opens Nov. 9.

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