Modern Negro Art
James A. Porter
With a New Introduction by David C. Driskell
INTRODUCTION TO THE 1992 EDITION
The outpouring of interest that has come about in recent years on the subject of African American art would come as no surprise to James A. Porter, if he were alive today. The preeminent scholar on this subject, he paved the way for other scholars, collectors, and patrons of art to see the importance of the subject and to assess its relevant role as part and parcel of the larger field of American art, long before it was popular to do so.
Porterís committed pursuit of scholarly research in the field is commensurate with the vigilance of the prophet, whose vision of what lies ahead is seldom heeded in his or her lifetime. But life does not always honor with longevity those who deserve to hear their accolades spoken aloud in their own lifetime. Yet, long after such visionaries are no longer physically with us, we who witnessed their gifts of the spirit continue to profit beyond measure as we share their artistry and scholarship with future generations.
Artist and educator David Driskell is Professor of Art at the University of
Maryland, College Park. He earned an AB degree from Howard University and a
MFA from Catholic University, and he has served on the faculties of Howard
and Fisk Universities. He has received numerous honors and awards,
including several honorary Doctor of Philosophy degrees. He is a member of
many organizations and serves on the board of directors of the National
Museum of African Art and the American Federation of Arts.