In Detroit there is a man named Olayami Dabls. He is an esteemed fine-artist, museum curator, and historian who has lectured extensively on African Material Culture to international audiences for over 30 years. For the last 12 years Dabls, as he likes to be called, has been building a showcase of African art all around his MBAD African Bead Museum. At the time of this writing I’m just finishing up a class at Eastern Michigan University on African artwork and chose to make a short documentary film on Dabls and his bead museum.
I spoke with Dabls about the MBAD African Bead Museum he founded in late May / early June of 2015. He told me about his artwork and the $100,000 he received by the Knight foundation here in Detroit to fix the roof on the adjacent building so the African Bead Museum can be completed and put on display in its full glory.