Paris Odyssey: Romare Bearden, Henri Matisse, Homer

SUNDAY 4 JANUARY  1900-2230

The Inspiration And Adventure That Led To The Realization Of This Paris Exhibition.


Odysseus Leaves Circe


(Exhibition to open January 19 at 18h30 at Reid Hall. Invitation to follow separately)

Special Guest is Robert O’Meally 

Columbia University’s Zora Neale Hurston Professor of English and Comparative Literature who conceived and curated the show.

Bob O’Meally will speak of what led to the Paris segment of the exhibition he conceived and curated on the legendary African-American artist, Romare Bearden.

The show is a modified version of the of the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition “Romare Bearden’s A Black Odyssey” that Bob also curated and that is currently at the Wallach Gallery on Columbia University’s campus in New York.

“Paris Odyssey” is the first stop of a global tour that will also include Istanbul. There are Bearden’s collages and watercolors based on Homer’s epic poems the Odyssey and the Iliad. In Paris, his work will be paired with that of Henri Matisse, the French master, who was one of Bearden’s primary artistic influences. (Bearden studied in Paris after WWII.)

Bearden’s Odyssey and Iliad series will hang side-by-side with Matisse’s own Odyssean sketches, as well as Matisse’s well-known Jazz collages. There will also be the Paris Blues series, based on his memory of his time in Paris during the 1950s.

“Bearden not only staked a claim to the tales of ancient Greece as having modern relevance, he also made the claim of global cultural collage—that as humans, we are all collages of our unique experiences,” said O’Meally.

Romare Bearden, The Artist:

Born in Charlotte, N.C., Bearden moved with his family to Harlem as a young child, part of the migration of African Americans from the South to greater opportunity in the North.

Throughout his career, Bearden created images of the lives of travelers on their way to and from home, a theme powerfully explored in his “Odysseus Series.”

Bearden, a graduate of New York University,worked in a studio in Harlem. He returned to Paris in 1950, after serving in WWII on the European front, and studied Art History and Philosophy at the Sorbonne. During this experience his style evolved more towards abstractionism, making him an important figure in post WWII aims at Avant-Garde American Art.

Upon his death in 1988, his works were dispersed across the world. This show presents an opportunity to see many important works reunited.


Address: At a beautiful and fun apartment in the center of Paris. We’ll confirm the exact address details with the reservation!

It’s €25.00 (EXACT CHANGE) for a fun dinner. Free-flowing wine.

A Fun Dinner, a great topic, meeting and networking with, fun new international people.

Reserve by email to with your telephone number. NO TEXT MESSAGES PLEASE

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