Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Developing the EBR African American Cultural Life

From the homepage of the EBR African American Cultural Life

When it comes to African American literary art and culture, Eugene B. Redmond remains one of our great cultural witnesses. He's documented hundreds, if not thousands, of writers, musicians, cultural workers, and supporters of the arts over the last several decades. In the process, he has amassed more than 100,000 thousand photographs.

More than almost any other poet, Redmond has been actively involved in producing an extensive visual record of poetry readings, cultural gatherings, performances, and humanities activities. In 2003, in the process of co-organizing an exhibit of his photographs of select black writers, Redmond and I began referring to his materials as a "collection." In subsequent years, I curated several exhibits from the "EBR Collection."

Those exhibits spurred interest in Redmond's holdings as a distinct collection. And that interest led to formal conversations with university officials about preserving the materials.   

Redmond eventually donated his materials to Lovejoy Library. In 2011, the library created the EBR African American Cultural Life, a searchable digital collection showcasing photographs, pamphlets, and posters from the EBR Collection. The materials offer a glimpse at Redmond's activities and productivity as a critical cultural witness.

A Notebook on Lovejoy Library's EBR Digital Collection
Eugene B. Redmond 

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