An Omaha icon and its push to be a leading voice for inclusivity in our city

30 Americans, on view at Joslyn Art Museum through May 5, brings together over 60 works by contemporary African American artists, focusing on important issues of racial, gender, and sexual identity; ongoing narratives of racial inequality in the United States; poverty; racial stereotyping; and the power of protest. Spend some time with Karin Campbell, Joslyn’s Phil Willson Curator of Contemporary Art, as she highlights the 30 Americans exhibit and discusses Joslyn’s commitment to broadening the presence of underrepresented voices in its galleries and programming.

About the speaker

Karin Campbell is the Phil Willson Curator of Contemporary Art at Joslyn Art Museum. Since joining Joslyn in 2012, Campbell has curated several major temporary exhibitions, including 30 Americans from the Miami-based Rubell Family Collection, Word/Play: Prints, Photographs, and Paintings by Ed Ruscha, and the traveling survey Sheila Hicks: Material Voices. In addition to overseeing Joslyn’s modern and contemporary permanent collection, Campbell is the principal curator for the Karen and Doug Riley Contemporary Artists Project (CAP) Gallery, the first space in the museum’s history dedicated specifically to living artists.

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Certainly, there are a lot of moments in this exhibition where you will catch your breath or you will want to cry or you will want to curse, or you’ll want to walk away; you’ll want to rage, but there really is a layer of hope embedded in the concepts that course through this exhibition. There’s this idea of celebrating America’s hard-fought successes in the battle for equality while also advocating for the fact that we need continuing reflection, conversation and action to grow as a nation and build a more just society. — Karin Campbell

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