Eric Edwards, antiquity collector of African art, will showcase pieces from his vast personal collection of 1,500 objects at this year’s Harlem Fine Arts Show (HFAS) taking place from January 30 through February 2 at the Riverside Church in New York City.
A collector for over 40 years, Edwards says he became interested in collecting at the age of 9 and has since traveled the world in search of interesting artifacts that tell the story of African and African American history before slavery. He collects both here and abroad and attends auctions regularly, bidding on and purchasing pieces that originated in 54 African countries.
“My father shared this history with me and it sparked my interest in our own people. As I advanced in my education, entered into the private sector, and started making a lot of money, I began investing in the purchase of African artifacts,” Edwards told TNJ.com.
The Brooklyn resident says he will try to bring “a snapshot of his collection, 100 pieces perhaps,” which he hopes will be “an excellent representation” of his objects.
“Eric Edwards’ collection has gained immense attention over the years because some of his finest artifacts have been known to represent secret societies and even the royalty of ancient Africa,” says Dion Clarke, founder of the Harlem Fine Arts Show. “This collection has long amazed art experts and historians — a tribute to Edwards’ exceptional eye and painstaking research into individual pieces.”
* (You can read more about Edwards when we feature him on TNJ.com next month for Black History Month. If you plan on attending HFAS, stop by his booth, which he’ll be sharing with artist Danny Simmons (yes, Rev. Run’s brother!).)
About the Harlem Fine Arts Show
The Harlem Fine Arts Show has attracted more than 40,000 visitors since its inception. Attendees include collectors, art enthusiasts, educators, students, and professionals from throughout the New York Metro region. Showcased are about 80 different artists, including many who are nationally and internationally known, including Leroy Campbell, Paul Goodnight, Michael Escoffery, Frank Frazier, Woodrow Nash, Dane Tilghman, Brenda Joysmith, and Glenn Tunstull. In addition, such widely-known establishments as Louisville’s E&S Gallery, Water Kolours Fine Art in Memphis, and New York’s Savacou Gallery will contribute works to the show. The fifth annual installment of the Harlem Fine Arts Show — a five-day exposition located at Harlem’s historic Riverside Church — features contemporary paintings, sculpture, and photography reflecting the African diaspora. The show will be open to all, with a $20 entry fee on most days. The exception will be opening night, January 29, when the still-to-be-determined admission fee will benefit the Harlem School of the Arts. Throughout the show, attendees will have an opportunity to participate in meet-and-greets with individual artists.