Revisiting “One Life: Marian Anderson” Art Matters Lecture with Leslie Ureña (via Zoom)
Anderson’s story, however, is much richer than a single concert. Before 1939 she had already performed throughout the world, challenging expectations along the way. In the aftermath of the 1939 concert, she repeatedly deﬂected questions about the controversy, as she assumed her role as a symbol of the struggle for African American equality and civil rights. Throughout her life, Anderson also inspired visual artists who were moved by her voice, symbolism, or bearing. During the Art Matters program, we will discuss the exhibition “One Life: Marian Anderson,” which was on view at the National Portrait Gallery from June 2019 to March 2020. Through each of the works in the exhibition, we will explore how Anderson’s life and career were just as crucial to the ﬁght for civil rights as those legendary minutes on a cold afternoon in Washington, D.C.
Image: William H. Johnson, "Marian Anderson" (detail), ca. 1945, oil on paperboard, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Harmon Foundation.