A version of the project was presented in the University’s Global Center in Paris and in Istanbul and South Africa. The exhibition was part of a yearlong series of programs, lectures, and performances inspired by Bearden’s interpretation of Homer’s classic, a staple of Columbia’s undergraduate Core Curriculum. Organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service in cooperation with the Romare Bearden Foundation and Estate and the DC Moore Gallery, the show was conceived and curated by Robert O’Meally, Columbia’s Zora Neale Hurston Professor of English, and is sponsored by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
Bearden (1911–1988) was long a Harlem fixture, working for several years in a studio above the famed Apollo Theater, just a few blocks northeast of campus. “Bearden not only staked a claim to the tales of ancient Greece as having modern relevance, he also made the claim of global cultural collage—that as humans, we are all collages of our unique experiences,” said O’Meally.
Exhibition tour apps for iOS and Android can be found at www.sites.si.edu, and the iPad app Romare Bearden Black Odyssey Remixes is available on iTunes.
Columbia Explores Romare Bearden: A Black Odyssey
*Romare Bearden: A Black Odyssey is organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service in cooperation with the Romare Bearden Foundation and Estate and DC Moore Gallery. The exhibition and its related educational resources are supported by a grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.