Skip Navigation

First Parker Exhibition, Looking Ahead, at Wright Museum, Nov. 29 - Jan. 22

Thursday, November 8, 2012

This month, Beloit College’s Wright Museum of Art will debut Looking Ahead: Portraits from the Mott-Warsh Collection. This traveling exhibition of collected portraiture created by artists of African descent, is being made possible by the new George S. Parker Exhibition Fund, which will continue to bring noteworthy traveling exhibitions to the Wright Museum of Art on a biennial basis.

The first exhibition, Looking Ahead, takes place from Nov. 29 – Jan. 22 in the Wright Museum of Art’s Hollensteiner Gallery, and a closing reception will be held Jan. 18 at 7 p.m. Featuring the black face in representational and conceptual portraiture, Looking Ahead examines the social, political and culture nuances of the black face and head in fine art and popular visual culture.

The theme of black portraiture has been primarily explored in photography and literature, yet rarely in fine art museum exhibitions. Since art museums seldom present portrait exhibitions, this exhibition was organized as an attempt to help fill that void and to unite a group of artists who rarely, if at all, are shown together in the same venue. Some of the artists featured in the exhibition include Robert Arneson, Romare Bearden and Chuck Close.

Looking Ahead features artwork in a variety of media: drawing, painting, printmaking, photography and sculpture. Several of the works are small, intimate pieces, while other works are large in scale and domineering in their presence.

More about the Parker Exhibition Fund:

The George S. Parker Exhibition Fund will continue to bring exhibitions of the quality of Looking Ahead to the museum every other year. In the interval years, the Wright will mount exhibitions that either highlight works from the museum’s permanent collection or feature items on loan from other museums and private collections.

Prior to the establishment of the George S. Parker Exhibition Fund, the Wright’s repertoire of exhibition consisted largely of student exhibitions or local and area artists. The newly established George S. Parker Exhibition Fund will enable the Wright Museum to significantly expand its current repertoire of exhibitions to include traveling exhibits and loans of artwork.

More about Looking Ahead:

The exhibition was organized by the Mott-Warsh Collection, a private art collection based in Flint, Mich., with a primary focus on work created by artists of African descent. The showing at Beloit College is part of a national two-year tour, containing approximately 30 works of art from the Mott-Warsh Collection. The tour was developed and managed by Smith Kramer Fine Art Services, an exhibition tour development company located in Kansas City, Mo.

Visit the Wright Museum:

The Wright Museum of Art, located at the corner of Prospect Street and Bushnell Street, is open Tuesday – Sunday from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. The exhibit is free and open to the public.

For more information on Looking Ahead, contact James Pearson, collections manager/exhibition coordinator, at 608-363-2095 or, or Hilary Dickinson, communications specialist, at 608-363-2849 or