Hill's Touring Collection Concludes at Nasher

March 31, 2006
Elizabeth Catlett, Cartas, 1986.

Elizabeth Catlett, Cartas, 1986. Lithograph, 28 x 19 inches. © Elizabeth Catlett. From the Grant Hill Collection of African American Art.

Romare Bearden, The Conjur Woman,circa 1979.

Romare Bearden, The Conjur Woman, circa 1979. Collage on board,23 x 15 inches. Lent by Evelyn N. Boulware and
Russell J.Goings.

Something All Our Own: The Grant Hill Collection of African American Art," which began a six-city national tour at the Orlando Museum of Art in November 2003, culminates at Duke's Nasher Museum of Art with a special exhibit from March 4 through July 16. The collection of Hill '94, the former Duke basketball star who now plays for the NBA's Orlando Magic, includes forty-six paintings, collages, sculptures, and works on paper by the most important African-American artists of the twentieth century. The exhibition includes collages, prints, sculptures, and paintings by Romare Bearden, Elizabeth Catlett, and John Biggers. Alongside those works are moody, solitary paintings by Hughie Lee-Smith, paintings by self-taught artist John Coleman, and sketches and paintings by the late Arthello Beck Jr.

"I am especially pleased to bring art and basketball together at Duke during the museum's inaugural year--and at the start of March Madness," says Kimerly Rorschach, the Mary D.B.T. and James H. Semans Director of the Nasher Museum. "Mr. Hill's exhibition is an exciting opportunity for the museum to reach new audiences."

"Something All Our Own" coincides with the Nasher Museum's "Conjuring Bearden," a new exhibition that explores artist Romare Bearden's careerlong fascination with the "conjur" woman. Both shows will be accompanied by a range of interdisciplinary programs, including a two-day scholarly symposium on Bearden, a film series, jazz concert, and Family Day event.

The Nasher Museum is the final venue for the Hill collection, which traveled to New Orleans, Baltimore, Dallas, Houston, and the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts. Hill and his wife, five-time Grammy nominee Tamia Hill, collected works over the past nine years to build "Something All Our Own." Hill, a six-time NBA All-Star, says his love of art and sports was inspired by his father, former Dallas Cowboys running back Calvin Hill.

"I wanted to be like my father," says Hill, an integral part of two Duke national championship teams. "As a child, our home was filled with paintings, sculptures, and artifacts from places throughout the world, but especially what my father calls 'Third World' art. It had a profound impact on me and shaped my own thinking about collecting African-American art and sharing my collection."

"Something All Our Own" was organized by Hill and Alvia J. Wardlaw, director/curator of the University Museum at Texas Southern University and curator of modern and contemporary art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. The exhibition is sponsored by Wachovia Corporation.