This talk emphasizes collage as a metaphor for making modern art as well as for conceiving modern selves and communities. Its focus is on Romare Bearden’s transformation of Homer’s Odyssey into collage, and also considers Toni Morrison and Louis Armstrong as collage-style improvising artists in search of pathways home. How does “collage art” suggest directions home? How does it posit strategies for drawing ourselves more closely together? What are the political/ethical dimensions of collaging in visual, music, and literature?
Professor O’Meally is Zora Neale Hurston Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University, and founder and former director of the Center for Jazz Studies.