talladega college

A Moment in History

The Amistad Murals consists of three panels: The Revolt, The Court Scene, and Back to Africa. They are housed in Savery Library and are known as one of artist Hale Aspacio Woodruffࢥst known works.

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Released On:
Thursday, November 03, 2011
Nicola Lawler
Office of Public Relations


Talladega, Alabama-In 1955, he began his teaching career on the grounds of the Talladega College campus. In the 1990s, he painted the awe-inspiring stained-glass windows of DeForest Chapel. In just a few days, he will return for another visit to Talladega. Renowned artist Dr. David C. Driskell, will return to the place of his first teaching position to have a conversation with one of his former students, artist and scientist, Dr. Art Bacon.

David C. Driskell, an art historian and prolific writer has authored and edited many books on African American Art and two books have been written about him by others. Among his friends were most of the great African American artists of the 20th Century—including Hale Woodruff who created Talladega College’s famed, Amistad Murals. A great colorist and print maker, Driskell’s vibrant paintings and serigraphs are much sought after around the world. In 2000, he received the National Humanities Medal from Bill Clinton; and in 2004, the High Museum of Atlanta created an annual $25,000 David C. Driskell award in his honor. Driskell has been the recipient of numerous fellowships, and he holds various honorary doctorates from institutions around the globe. His art has been seen and appreciated world-wide; and in the 1990s, his art was viewed by national audiences while on display in the home of the Huxtables on The Cosby Show. As the world’s leading authority on African American Art, Driskell has come to the aide of Camille and Bill Cosby, former President Bill Clinton, as far as Africa, and countless others.

Art Bacon was a student of Dr. Driskell when he attended Talladega College. Bacon was educated and trained as a biologist but his passion has always been art. As a young scientist, Bacon discovered a new species of protozoa and was the first African American postdoctoral researcher at the University of Miami. After completing his doctorate, he returned to head the sciences department at his alma mater. It was here at Talladega College, he decided that without his art, he and his science would suffer. He has exhibited in New York, Atlanta, DC, and many other places. He is featured in the February 2008 edition of Southern Living Magazine and in several articles in Lakeside Magazine.

The conversation between David Driskell and Art Bacon will be held in beautiful and historic Deforest Chapel which will be illuminated by light from the 65 stained glass windows designed by Driskell. The conversation will take place on Sunday, November 13, 2011 at 2:00 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call the Office of Institutional Advancement at 256-761-8832.

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The history of Talladega College began on November 20, 1865, when two former slaves William Savery and Thomas Tarrant, both of Talladega, met in convention with a group of new freedmen in Mobile, Alabama.

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