Romare Bearden Foundation

Artist Romare Bearden was born in North Carolina in 1911, but as a young boy he moved to Harlem, which became the subject of much of his most riveting work. Its streets captivated him, and his brightly colored collages vividly capture the buzz and chaos of city life. The class “Romare Bearden: Home is Harlem” was taught in partnership with the Studio Museum in Harlem—which Bearden played a role in helped to establish—and the Romare Bearden Foundation. The course emphasized Bearden’s artwork, his published articles and interviews, and the work of those that influenced him. Diedra Harris-Kelley, who is co-director of the foundation, taught the class, bringing students rare catalogs, books, and videos from the foundation, whose archives are currently not open to the public. The class explored “how Harlem shaped the artist’s thinking,” she says.