Beyond Walls: Designs for Twentieth-Century American Murals

January 22, 2016 - May 1, 2016

Colorful sketch for mural

In conjunction with its recent exhibition Walls of Color, the Ackland extends its exploration of murals with Beyond Walls: Designs for Twentieth-Century American Murals.

Beyond Walls presents seven designs for murals. The mural studies offer a glimpse into the logic and concerns of artists such as Charles Alston, James Henry Daugherty, Robert Motherwell, and Ben Shahn. Comprised of works from the Ackland’s permanent collection, as well as loans from The McConnell Trust and the private collection of Cathy and Hunter Allen, Beyond Walls looks behind the final product to explore approaches to the mural making process.

Curated by Elijah Heyward III, intern in American Art and PhD candidate in American Studies, UNC-Chapel Hill.

Charles Alston, American, 1907-1977: Mural Sketch (detail), 1949 or later; black, white, and red chalk. Transferred from Southern Historical Collection, Louis Round Wilson Library, Charles Henry Alston Papers, 2009.18.1.

James Henry Daugherty, American, 1889-1974: Sketch for Mural, c. 1920; gouache. Gift of Julie and Lawrence B. Salander, in honor of Richard B. Gersten, Class of 1970, 2006.37.12.