Friday, February 3, 2017

On Bernard Lumpkin’s visual conversation about his roots

Show Us Your Walls
By Robin Pogrebin
The collector Bernard Lumpkin with one of his favorite paintings, Henry Taylor’s “The Sweet William Rorex Jr.” It’s a portrait, Mr. Lumpkin said, “but there’s obviously a lot more going on.”
When his father was ailing, Bernard Lumpkin felt a new urgency to understand the elder man’s experience as an African-American who grew up in the Watts neighborhood in South Los Angeles before moving to New York to become a physicist. So he used his earnings as a producer in MTV’s news and documentaries division — where he no longer works — to begin buying art by minority artists. “Sometimes people still come over who don’t know me well and they say, ‘Bernard, why do you have so much African-American art?’” he said. “It’s something I’m constantly reminded of. The collection became a way for me to continue that conversation with my father.” [link]