The Harvey B. Gantt Center
The Harvey B. Gantt Center offers exhibits and educational programs that explore the experiences and celebrates the triumphs of people of African descent in the United States. October 2009 marked the opening of the Afro-American Cultural Center as the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture. The name of the facility honors Harvey Bernard Gantt, a community leader and businessman. Gant was a trailblazer, the first African-American student admitted to Clemson University and Charlotte's first African-American mayor.
Backstory and Context
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for
African-American Arts and Culture (formerly the Afro-American Cultural Center) was
born as a result from sit-ins held by students demanding a forum to acknowledge
the history and contributions of African- Americans to this country. The
museum’s theme is “where you belong”, which captures the original vision of the
founders. From beginnings in 1974, the founder’s vision has been superseded. In
2009 the Gantt center opened in the heart of uptown Charlotte, North Carolina.
The museum is named in honor of Harvey Bernard Gantt; a respected community member and businessman. Gantt was also the first African American student admitted to Clemson University, and served as Charlotte’s first African-American mayor. The Gantt center presents and preserves African-American excellence in art, history and culture. The Gantt center celebrates the trials and triumphs of African Americans and their contributions to arts and culture.
The Gantt center features the John and Vivian Hewitt Collection of African- American Art. The collection consists of fifty-eight famous works renowned by the greatest American artists. Featured artist include; Romare Bearden, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Elizabeth Catlett, Jonathan Green, Jacob Lawrence, Ann Tanksley, Hale Woodruff, and many more. The Gantt center also features traveling exhibits such as; America I am, Questions Bridge: Black Males and many others .