When Art Works: African Utilitarian Objects from the Faxon Collection through February 8.
Most Africans view art primarily as a tool of daily life that fulfills either a practical or symbolic purpose. When Art Works explores Africa’s utilitarian objects, a largely uncelebrated aspect of the continent’s rich artistic heritage. Whether intended as containers, implements, covers, or supports, the objects in this exhibition were once used in mundane activities in homes, artisans’ workshops, farms, and religious shrines, and not intended to hang on walls or sit on living room mantles. Each was created with practicality and convenience in mind. Yet, as mostly personal items, technical mastery and embellishments were also meant to please their owners.