BHM Celebration of Art: Fred Eversley’s _Pale Lens_

This month, 606 is honoring Black History by sharing art by black artists. We’ve invited artists, art historians, curators, archivists, and others with expertise in art to share their favorite pieces of art by black artists around the globe. If you find your life enriched by this blog series, say “thank you” by buying art from a black artist, visiting a museum, asking your local art museum to include more black artists, donating to an art scholarship for students of color, asking your library to stock more books on black art, dropping off some art supplies at your local community center or daycare or senior center, or donating art by artists of color to your local school, community center, or house of worship. 

Today, we thank Tyler Allen, graduate intern with the Spencer Museum of Art, located at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas, for sharing one of her favorite pieces from the Spencer. If you like it, stop by the Spencer for more. Admission is free, though donations are appreciated. 



Pale lens 2
Photo Courtesy: Andy White/KU Marketing Communications

Fred Eversley, a Black intellectual, sculptor, and trained engineer, is one of the few Black artists whose work is highlighted and displayed at the University of Kansas’ Spencer Museum of Art. His work Pale Lens (1970) is one of many pieces where Eversley experiments with optical polyester sculpture forms. In Pale Lens, Eversley investigates the optical principles of physics and properties of lenses and mirrors. Being drawn to the geometric structure of the work itself, Eversley tantalizes his viewers through optical illusion, as he challenges viewers’ perception in this three dimensional work of art.


Pale lens 1
Photo Courtesy: Andy White/KU Marketing Communications

Fred Eversley, a Brooklyn, New York native, received his degree in Electrical Engineering from what is now known as Carnegie Mellon University. He began his work and experimentation as a sculptor in 1970 after moving to Los Angeles. His strong interest in “art informed by science and technology” would lead him to become a prominent international artist. Just a few of his many accomplishments include being featured in over 200 exhibitions at various museums, galleries, and art festivals; being awarded 1st prize sculpture at the Biennale Internazionale Dell’ Arte Contemporanea di Firenze in Florence, Italy; and lastly, being represented in the permanent collection of 35 museums. Today, Eversley resides in California, and he maintains studios in both California and New York.

Pale Lens can be viewed at the Spencer Museum of Art in the Forms of Thought Gallery.

Although the month of February solidifies a time for Black history to be celebrated, recognized, and remembered, I would encourage everyone to spend more time beyond that, to further what they know or what they think they know about Black History. Living in a world where there is a constant misconception about identities of color, we must take it upon ourselves to expand our knowledge in order to appreciate one another in this space.

Those who have no record of what their forebears have accomplished lose the inspiration which comes from the teaching of biography and history. -Carter G. Woodson


About the Author:

Tyler AllenTyler Allen is a first-year master student at the University of Kansas, and a graduate intern at the Spencer Museum of Art. She is working to obtain a dual master degree from the departments of African and African American Studies and Museum Studies. Her research interests include Hip-Hop, Black communities and culture, and social justice.




You can find our first post in this series, art historian Stefanie Snider’s commentary on Tatyana Fazlalizadeh’s America is Black here. 




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