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Beverly Buchanan

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Name  Beverly Buchanan

Role  Artist
Beverly Buchanan BeverlyBuchanan091209athumb646x430132589jpg
Education  Columbia University (1967–1969)
Books  Home Space, Place, Memory: The Work of Beverly Buchanan
Awards  Guggenheim Fellowship for Creative Arts, US & Canada

Beverly buchanan

Beverly Buchanan (October 8, 1940 – July 4, 2015) was an African-American artist whose works include painting and sculpture. Buchanan is noted for her exploration of Southern vernacular architecture through her art.


Beverly Buchanan Macon Georgia Beverly Buchanan

Beverly buchanan an interview with marcia g yerman

Early life

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Buchanan was born in Fuquay, North Carolina, but grew up in Orangeburg, South Carolina, where her father was dean of the School of Agriculture at South Carolina State College, which was then the only state school for African Americans in South Carolina.

Beverly Buchanan Awards College Art Association CAA Advancing the

In 1962, Buchanan graduated from Bennett College, in Greensboro, North Carolina, a historically black women's college, with a bachelor of science degree in medical technology. She went on to attend Columbia University, where she received a master's degree in parasitology in 1968 and a master's degree in public health in 1969.

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Although she was accepted to medical school, Buchanan decided not to go due to her desire to dedicate more time to her art. In 1971 she enrolled in a class taught by Norman Lewis at the Art Students League in New York City. Lewis, along with artist Romare Bearden, became friends and mentors to Buchanan. Buchanan decided to become a full-time artist in 1977 after exhibiting her work in a new talent show at Betty Parsons Gallery. In the same year, she moved to Macon, Georgia.

Beverly Buchanan Response and Memory The Art of Beverly Buchanan

On July 4, 2015, Buchanan died in Ann Arbor, Michigan at the age of seventy-four.


Buchanan has created drawings, sculpture, prints, and photos.

In 1976 and 1977, Buchanan drew "black walls" on paper. She "wanted to see what the wall looked like on the other side" and put four walls together in three dimensions. She then began to sculpt in cement. An example of a three-dimensional work from her early career is the sculpture "Ruins and Rituals" at the Museum of Arts and Sciences in Macon, Georgia, part of a series of concrete structures that recall ancient tombs.

Buchanan is best known for her many paintings and sculptures on the “shack,” a rudimentary dwelling associated with the poor. Scholar Janet T. Marquardt argues that Buchanan treats shacks not as documentary elements but as "images of endurance and personal history"; often using bright colors and a style of childlike simplicity, the works "evoke the warmth and happiness that can be found even in the meanest dwelling, representing the faith and caring that is not reserved for privileged classes."

Buchanan said of her work, "My work is a logical progression of my early interest in textures and surfaces and walls. The early "walls" were lonely, freestanding, fragmented things. When I lived in New York I was looking for things that were demolished. That gave them character. I liked to imagine who might have lived in the apartment, and whose home it might have been. Each family that moved in repainted the walls their color. When a building is torn down the various layers of color are exposed. It is almost surgical--like looking through a microscope and looking at different layers of tissue and media."

In the fall of 2016 a comprehensive exhibition of her work opened at the Brooklyn Museum in the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. Beverly Buchanan - Ruins and Rituals featured painting, sculptures, drawings, as well as the artist's notebooks and photographs form her personal archive. Buchanan's work is in the collection of the Georgia Museum of Art.

Buchanan's work was featured at the Independent Art Fair 2017 at Andrew Edlin Gallery's booth. Buchanan has remarked, “A lot of my pieces have the word ‘ruins’ in their titles because I think that tells you this object has been through a lot and survived — that’s the idea behind the sculptures … it’s like, ‘Here I am; I’m still here!'”


  • 1980: Guggenheim Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship.
  • 1990: National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in sculpture.
  • 1997: Georgia Visual Arts honoree.
  • 2002: Anonymous Was a Woman Award.
  • 2005: College Art Association Committee for Women in the Arts distinguished honoree
  • 2011: Women's Caucus for Art lifetime achievement award
  • Selected solo exhibitions

    List from exhibition catalogue "9 Women in Georgia"

  • Traveling retrospective exhibition organized by the Montclair Art Museum to nine museums and college galleries, 1994-96
  • Steinbaum Krauss Gallery, New York, 1993
  • Schering-Plough Headquarters Gallery, Madison, NJ, 1992
  • Three Rivers Art Festival, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 1992
  • Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, VA, 1992
  • Jacksonville Art Museum, Florida, 1992
  • Bernie Steinbaum Gallery, New York, 1991, 1990
  • Oregon School of Arts and Crafts, Portland, 1991
  • Greenville County Museum, South Carolina, 1991
  • Fairleigh Dickenson University, Rutherford, NJ, 1990
  • Museum of Arts and Sciences, Macon, GA 1990
  • Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston-Salem, NC, 1989
  • Heath Gallery, Atlanta, GA 1987, 1986, 1981
  • University of Alabama, 1982
  • Kornblee Gallery, New York, 1981
  • Truman Gallery, New York, 1978
  • Mercer University, Macon, GA, 1977
  • Upsala College, East Orange, NJ, 1974
  • Cinque Gallery, New York, 1972
  • References

    Beverly Buchanan Wikipedia