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Araminta with Rifle and Vévé Coming to Banneker-Douglass Museum

Monumental sculpture of Harriet Tubman by “Genius” Fellow Dr. Joyce J. Scott on display at Banneker-Douglass Museum starting September 1st

For Immediate Release – August 1, 2022

Annapolis, MD – Come to the Banneker-Douglass Museum starting September 1st to stand in awe of the monumental sculpture, Araminta with Rifle and Vévé (2017), created by MacArthur “Genius” Fellow Dr. Joyce J. Scott. Viewing the sculpture will be a perfect way to continue celebrating the Harriet Tubman Bicentennial and to start off International Underground Railroad Month.   

Photo Credit: Ken Eck, Courtesy Goya Contemporary Gallery

Standing at 10 feet tall, the Harriet Tubman monument is made of painted milled foam with found objects, blown glass, and mixed media appliqués. Tubman holds in her hands a beaded rifle adorned with flowers and a beaded staff, called a vévé.

Provocative and piercing, the sculpture was originally a part of Joyce J. Scott’s 2018 exhibition entitled Harriet Tubman and Other Truths at Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, N.J. The Banneker-Douglass Museum is honored to have it as its new temporary home, on view through September 30, 2023.

“Dr. Joyce J. Scott’s work is a touchstone in the museum’s history. Two years after opening in 1984, Banneker-Douglass Museum had its first group art exhibition and Joyce J. Scott was the only woman artist featured. As the daughter of quilter/textile artist Elizabeth Talford Scott, Joyce’s work often centers legacy and defiance. This sculpture allows visitors to celebrate both concepts,” said Schillica Howard, Curator of Collections at Banneker-Douglass Museum.

Dr. Joyce J. Scott is a Baltimore native whose work examines the extremes of human nature– the beauty and the brutality– to create artworks that not only illustrate the stories of a complex collective history, but that also reveal universal truths. In 2016, Dr. Scott was awarded the MacArthur Fellowship, known as “a genius grant,” which has brought national and international acclaim to “a woman who is frequently touted as one of Maryland’s greatest living artists” according to Baltimore Magazine. 

And there’s more coming to the Banneker-Douglass Museum this fall. This piece is a part of an upcoming exhibition, The Radical Voice of Blackness Speaks of Resistance and Joy, which presents multidisciplinary works of art by a superlative of fifteen cross-generational Black Maryland-based artists and the Banneker-Douglass Museum Fine Art Collection. Guest curated by Myrtis Bedolla of Galerie Myrtis in Baltimore, this exhibition explores America’s fraught history of systemic racism with thought-provoking narratives while celebrating the resiliency of a people who have persevered despite social and political devices to suppress them. The Radical Voice of Blackness Speaks of Resistance and Joy opens on Thursday, November 10, 2022. 

The sculpture will be installed outside the main entry doors of the museum, greeting visitors with grandeur. Banneker-Douglass Museum is located at 84 Franklin Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.


For more information, please contact: Jan Lee, Director of Marketing and Communications, / (410) 216-6185