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David C. Driskell at the University House

Glimpse works by David C. Driskell and other African American artists inside the University House through this virtual exhibition.

Since the University House was built on the west side of College Park campus in 2012, works from the David C. Driskell Center art collection have adorned its walls. This has been a great opportunity to showcase works by African American artists while emphasizing the University of Maryland’s commitment to the arts.

The David C. Driskell Center honors the legacy of David C. Driskell (1931-2020) - Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of Art, Artist, Art Historian, Collector, Curator, and Philanthropist - by preserving the rich heritage of African American visual art and culture.

Born in 1931 in Eatonton, Ga., David C. Driskell was educated in Washington, D.C., at Howard University and The Catholic University of America, where he received the Master of Fine Arts degree in 1961. He was hired in 1977 as a professor of art at the University of Maryland, College Park and retired in 1998 with the title of Distinguished University Professor of Art, Emeritus.

He was the recipient of many awards, including ten honorary doctoral degrees, as well as the National Humanities Medal, awarded to him by President William J. Clinton in 2000. Driskell authored seven books on the subject of African American art, co-authored four others, and published more than forty exhibition catalogues. His scholarship highlighted the contribution of African American artists to the American art canon.

Driskell worked principally as a painter, often using collage and mixed media. After his retirement from the University of Maryland, Driskell focused on printmaking, producing about 40 prints since 2003 with Master Printer Curlee R. Holton, the Driskell Center’s Director. Click here for additional information about Driskell's life.


On July 1, 2020, Dr. Darryll J. Pines took over as the University of Maryland's 34th President. On his first day as UMD’s President, he sent out a statement and video outlining his goals as president and twelve initiatives. In his eleventh initiative, President Pines wrote:

Though access to the University House is currently limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are honored to create a virtual exhibition for the enjoyment of the university community as well as our friends and supporters across the country.

The exhibition was curated by Dorit Yaron, the Center’s Deputy Director, who worked with President and Mrs. Pines to select works by David C. Driskell and a few other African American artists from the Driskell Center’s art collections. Though most of the works selected for the house are by David C. Driskell, others were selected to highlight Maryland, Marylander artists, or artists who have long worked with the David C. Driskell Center. To view the collections online, please visit here. 

Curated by Dorit Yaron
Virtual exhibition designed by Aryn G. Neurock Schriner