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The Collectors Circle Presents: Dr. Leslie King Hammond in Conversation with Dr. Stanton Thomas

The Collectors Circle is proud to welcome Dr. Leslie King Hammond in dialogue with MFA Senior Curator of Collections & Exhibitions, Dr. Stanton Thomas. Together, they will highlight the art of Hughie Lee-Smith and Carroll Cloar—two artists active during the mid-twentieth century, focusing on their shared views regarding social justice, existential fear, and Magical Realism.

Currently, the museum has paired two paintings by these artists in the American-Modern Gallery: Hughie Lee-Smith’s The Walls (1954) is on loan from Art Bridges while Carroll Cloar’s The Pool Room (1960) is part of the MFA’s permanent collection. Together, Dr. King Hammond and Dr. Thomas will examine the parallels and differences between these two painters—one of whom was Black and northern, and the other who was white and southern.

Leslie King Hammond

Photograph Credit: Grace Roselli

Dr. King Hammond is an art historian, curator, artist and cultural art activist, and community innovator. She is Professor Emerita, former Graduate Dean and founding Director of the Center of Race and Culture at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). King Hammond also sits on the board of several companies that support arts and cultural projects in Baltimore communities. She has had an active career curating exhibitions and written essays and publications on numerous artists and cultural movements including Jacob Lawrence, Hughie Lee-Smith, Betye Saar, Aminah Brenda Lynne Robinson, and Joyce J. Scott. King Hammond’s artistry has been exhibited at the Museum of Biblical Art, The Smithsonian, Galerie Myrtis, MICA, and the James E Lewis Museum. Her mixed media bricolage works explore the anonymity of women’s work and the intersection of African Diasporic spiritual beliefs.


Dr, Stanton Thomas, Senior Curator of Collections and Exhibitions at the Museum of Fine arts, St. Petersburg

Dr. Stanton Thomas, Senior Curator of Collections and Exhibitions, has served as the head of the curatorial department since 2018. He received his Ph.D. in Northern Renaissance art from Case Western University, and holds an MA from the University of Missouri, Columbia.  His recent projects at the MFA include A Feast for the Eyes: European Masterpieces from the Grasset Collection (2019) and Drawn to Beauty: The Art and Atelier of Jean Schlumberger (2018-2019).


FREE for MFA members or with admission
Advance Registration Required



The Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg is a nonprofit organization that fosters a vibrant community through education, engagement, and public service. Your participation in this event helps to support the museum, our exhibitions, and programs. Here are a few ways you can support the MFA today:

Event Details

October 28, 2021

7–8 pm

Event Categories

Museum of Fine Arts – Marly Room

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