Art as Community: Fall 2012 Lincoln-Barnes Lecture Features Moveable, Live Art

LINCOLN UNIVERSITY, PA – Presentations on the work of the late Arthur Hall, an acclaimed choreographer, who used African-inspired dance to build self-esteem and collaborative community efforts in Philadelphia and abroad were the subject of the University’s November 29th convocation.

Part of the biannual 2012 Lincoln–Barnes Lecture series, which features prominent scholars, artists and curators known for their contributions to art while celebrating the unique relationship Lincoln University and the Barnes Foundation have had since 1946 to encourage all Lincoln students to develop a lifelong appreciation for art, the Hall presentations included Bruce Williams, executive director of the Arthur Hall Collection and Artistic Director Nana Korantema of Ile-Ife Films, which includes the collection.

One of Hall’s former students, Korantema, explained that Hall used art to transform and empower people for leadership.

“A key part of Arthur Hall’s philosophy and what I witnessed him do again and again was accept people where they are, and acknowledge the innate ability for people to change once they are fed what is positive,” said Korantema, also a master drummer and educator.

Williams, a longtime colleague of Hall, has been a film maker for 45 years showed a short film, “Functional Art Moveable Art,” created specifically for the lecture that addressed, along with his remarks, how assessable art enlivens communities.  The film can be viewed at

Commenting on how art makes some communities more desirable places to live, Professor Dana Flint, Chair of Department of Philosophy and Religion, said, “Historical examples include Greenwich Village, SOHO, and some areas of Queens, all of which were or are communities in which art now flourishes.”

Aside from Lincoln students, a group of 30 juniors and seniors from Mount Pleasant High School in Wilmington, Delaware, enrolled in their International Baccalaureate Arts Program that cultivates lifelong interest in art, attended the lecture as part of a Lincoln Visual Arts program visit.

 Lincoln University of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, founded in 1854 as the nation’s first degree-granting Historically Black College and University, combines the elements of a liberal arts and science-based undergraduate curriculum along with select graduate programs to meet the needs of those living in a highly-technological and global society.  Today, the University enrolls a diverse student body of approximately 2,000 men and women.  Internationally recognized for preparing and producing world class leaders such as Thurgood Marshall, the first African American U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Lillian Fishburne, the first African American woman promoted to Rear Admiral in the U.S. Navy, Langston Hughes, the noted poet, Kwame Nkrumah, the first President of Ghana and Nnamdi Azikiwe, the first President of Nigeria. 

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