Pioneering collectors Harmon and Harriet Kelley paved the way for the collecting of African American art across San Antonio, Texas, and the United States. Something to Say: The McNay Presents 100 Years of African American Art illustrates the Kelley Collection’s impact by juxtaposing works from their renowned holdings with loans from the burgeoning collections of Guillermo Nicolas and Jim Foster, John and Freda Facey, and the McNay. Something to Say is the first survey of modern and contemporary African American art at the McNay.
Drawn primarily from the Kelleys' groundbreaking collection, Something to Say presents more than 50 artworks by a range of 20th- and 21st-century artists. Featuring masterpieces by such iconic figures as Charles Alston, Elizabeth Catlett, Lois Mailou Jones, Jacob Lawrence, Norman Lewis, and Charles White, the exhibition and related programs allow visitors to reflect on a range of African American experiences, and examine how artists have expressed personal, political, and racial identity over approximately 100 years. Something to Say exemplifies the McNay’s commitment to equity, inclusion, and social consciousness as well as artistic excellence.
Serving as curatorial advisor is Lowery Stokes Sims, former director of the Studio Museum in Harlem. The exhibition is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue featuring two essays by Sims.