Augustus Casely-Hayford is the new director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C.
Casely-Hayford is a research associate at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) at the University of London and a member of its Centre of African Studies Council. The new director said, “It is such an exciting time to be joining the team at the National Museum of African Art. African art is at another fascinating juncture as artists reconfigure our understanding of the medium, helping us to chart courses through the big issues of our time while reminding us of the complex and long historical tradition upon which they stand. I want to build upon the exemplary institutional history of the National Museum of African Art and continue to deliver the very best of historical and contemporary African art to new and existing audiences alike.”
The National Museum of African Art is the only museum in the United States dedicated to the collection, conservation, study, and exhibition of Africa’s arts across time period, geography, and medium. The museum’s collection of 12,000 artworks represents the diversity of the African continent and includes a variety of media — from jewelry to painting, photography, pottery, sculpture, textile, video, and sound art—dating from ancient to present times.