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Kennedy hosts gallery talks, closing reception for African mask exhibit

ATHENS, Ohio (April 17, 2007) -- The Kennedy Museum of Art at Ohio University invites the public to a free closing celebration for Behind the Mask: African Art from the Ellen Hobbs Collection and the Kennedy Museum of Art from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday, April 20.

Events include gallery talks by Fred T. Smith, professor of African art at Kent State University and by Ellen Hobbs, mask collector, starting at 5 p.m. Then, at 7 p.m., KMA hosts a closing reception for Behind the Mask, which closes Sunday, April 22.

Smith's exhibit, Object Lessons: Authenticity in African Art, is currently on display at the Kent State University Museum. He recently co-authored the African arts textbook "The Visual Arts of Africa: Gender, Power, and Life-Cycle Rituals," with retired Ohio University professor Judith Perani.

For more than 60 years, Ellen Hobbs has collected international masks, which she displays at her Hendersonville, NC, home, known locally as the Fifth Avenue Mask Museum. This retired high school art teacher is also a world traveler and a former private pilot and competitive sailboat racer. Her African masks traveled for the first time in February for Behind the Mask.

Following these talks, the Kennedy hosts a closing reception for the Behind the Mask at 7 p.m. with guest curator Andrea Frohne, professor of African art at Ohio University, and her four graduate students who assisted with the research and installation of this exhibit.

EVENING PROGRAM:

    Gallery talks
  • 5 p.m. - Fred T. Smith, Professor of African Art at Kent State University, "The Social Power of the African Masquerade"
  • 6 p.m. - Ellen Hobbs, Mask Collector from Hendersonville, North Carolina
    Closing Reception
  • 7-9 p.m. - Closing Reception for "Behind the Mask" with exhibit Curator Andrea Frohne, Professor of    African Art at Ohio University, and her graduate students, who assisted with the exhibition

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Media Contact: Public Relations and Media Coordinator Anita Martin, (740) 597-1585 or martina@ohio.edu

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