Dr. Kimberly Cleveland, assistant professor of African and African-American art at Georgia State University, will discuss “Preserving Art, History and Memory: The AfroBrazil Museum” at 6 p.m. Friday, April 11, in the auditorium of O’Shaughnessy Educational Center on the St. Paul campus of the University of St. Thomas.

The talk, free and open to the public, is sponsored by the university’s Art History Department. It is the fourth in a series of four lectures at St. Thomas this year on “Protecting the Past: Looting, Identity and the Preservation Crisis.”

Using the AfroBrazil Museum in São Paulo as an example, Cleveland will discuss how art can change national attitudes toward race and cultural heritage, and how to challenge official versions of history and memory through the display of art.

“Although Brazil has the highest number of peoples of African descent outside the African continent, this social reality is not reflected in the country’s cultural institutions,” Cleveland said.

In her talk she will highlight the AfroBrazil Museum’s innovative approaches, including some of the successes and failures the institution has experienced since opening in 2004.

Other speakers in the series included Dr. Victoria Reed, an international expert in tracing the history and ownership of art and the Sadler Curator for Provenance at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and Cori Wegener, the cultural heritage preservation officer at the Smithsonian Institution.

More information about the Art History Department’s lecture series can be found online here.

Another view of the AfroBrazil Museum.

Another view of the AfroBrazil Museum.