Arts Society & Culture

GMOA to hold ‘An Evening with the Blues’ in celebration of Black History Month

Athens, Ga. – The Friends of the Georgia Museum of Art, the membership program of the museum at the University of Georgia, will present “An Evening with the Blues” Feb. 16.

Celebrating Black History Month and honoring Larry and Brenda Thompson, the dinner event will begin with cocktails at 6 p.m. A gallery talk on Jay Robinson’s painting “Billie Holiday Singing the Blues” will be conducted by Paul Manoguerra, the museum’s chief curator and curator of American art, at 6:15 p.m. Dinner, catered by the National and served at 7 p.m., will include a performance by local singer songwriter Kyshona Armstrong in the M. Smith Griffith Grand Hall. The event is $40 per person.

Each year, GMOA honors an African-American leader in Athens and northeast Georgia who has given back to the African-American community and supported the arts. This year, Larry and Brenda Thompson will be recognized.

Larry and Brenda Thompson are in the process of donating 100 works by African-American artists to the museum. The works include 72 objects featured in the exhibition “Tradition Redefined: The Larry and Brenda Thompson Collection of African American Art” and 28 additional works from their collection. The couple is also funding an endowment to support a new curatorial position at the museum.

Larry Thompson joined the university’s law school this fall as the John A. Sibley Professor in Corporate and Business Law. Previously, he served as deputy attorney general for the U.S. and was a senior vice president of government affairs and general counsel and secretary for PepsiCo. Brenda Thompson currently serves on the board of trustees for the Barnes Foundation and the board of the Clark Atlanta University Art Galleries. She was an assistant professor at Morehouse College in the department of psychology before focusing on child and adolescent mental health, first as a clinical psychologist and then as a school psychologist.

“An Evening with the Blues” is sponsored by the Athens chapter of The Links Inc. in memory of Lillian Lynch, Todd Emily, Julie and Ira Roth, the UGA Alumni Association, the UGA Office for Institutional Diversity and Ashford Manor Bed and Breakfast and Event Facility.

To reserve a space at the dinner event, call 706/542-0830 by Feb. 9.

Museum Information
Partial support for the exhibitions and programs at the Georgia Museum of Art is provided by the Georgia Council for the Arts through appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The council is a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Individuals, foundations and corporations provide additional museum support through their gifts to the University of Georgia Foundation. The Georgia Museum of Art is located at 90 Carlton Street in the Performing and Visual Arts Complex on the East Campus of the University of Georgia. For more information, including hours, see or call 706/542-4662.