Death of Dewey F. Mosby


10/8/12 - Obituary - Dewey F. Mosby left us last 1st August at the age of 70. This American art historian, born in Texas and a Harvard graduate, Officier des Arts et Lettres, a longstanding member of the Société de l’Histoire de l’Art français was well known by French museum curators, notably those at the Louvre. He was one of the first Afro-Americans to become a curator of European art in one of the Fine Arts museums of the United States, Detroit. He then directed the Picker Art Gallery at Colgate University as of 1981. We especially appreciated his talents as a specialist of the painter Decamps (on whom he had written his dissertation, published by Garland in 1977) his great regret (and also ours) being that he would not carry out the great Decamps retrospective awaited by all (the Louvre, when asked unfortunately did not follow up nor did the Musée de Picardie in Amiens : when will this artist be duly recognized in France ?). Mosby was also interested in the great Afro-American artist Henry Ossawa Tanner, so famous, as we should remember, that two of his masterpieces (The Resurrection of Lazarus from 1896 and The Pilgrims at Emmaus from 1905) were acquired before 1914 by the Musée du Luxembourg in Paris. We would like to mention the very important exhibitions fundamental to knowledge of the artist organized successfully by Mosby at the Philadelphia Museum in 1991 and at the Kansas City museum in 1995 (how sad that neither of these shows came to France, especially since Tanner stayed in France, at Etaples, with the colony of artists who had come to work in that region). We felt it was only right to salute the memory of this very personable man, a good friend of our country and its museums, a fervent admirer of 19th century French painters.

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Jacques Foucart, mardi 14 août 2012



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