Penn State School of Visual Arts alumna Beverly McIver, Ebenshade Professor of the Practice of Visual Arts at Duke University, was recently among the African American musicians and artists from North Carolina honored by N.C. Governor Roy Cooper in celebration of Black History Month.
“Black History Month is a time to reflect on the deep contributions made by African Americans to the life and culture of our state and our nation,” said Gov. Cooper in a news release. “This year, we will recognize African American artists, musicians and writers with ties to North Carolina whose work has enriched our lives and expanded our understanding.”
McIver, who was named a Penn State Alumni Fellow in 2010 and received a College of Arts and Architecture Alumni Award in Visual Arts in 2003, is an award-winning contemporary artist whose work is in the permanent collection of the North Carolina Museum of Art, the Weatherspoon Art Museum, the Baltimore Museum of Art, the North Carolina Central University Museum of Art, the Asheville Museum of Art, The Crocker Art Museum, the Nelson Fine Arts Center Art Museum at Arizona State University, the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University and the Mint Museum, as well as significant corporate and private collections. She has had solo exhibitions at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, North Carolina Museum of Art and the Mint Museum. Before joining the Duke University faculty in 2016, she was the Suntrust Endowed Professor of Art at North Carolina Central University.
McIver’s family members are frequently a subject of her work, including her oldest sister, Renee, who is mentally disabled and for whom Beverly is legal guardian. “Raising Renee,” a feature-length documentary film, produced in association with HBO by Academy Award-nominated and award-winning filmmakers Steven Ascher and Jeanne Jordan, tells the story of the impact of McIver’s promise to care for her sister when their mother dies. The film played in festivals around the country, was nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Arts and Culture Programming and is now streaming on Amazon Prime.
Other North Carolina residents recognized by the governor include Roberta Flack, Grammy Award-winning R&B artist; Fantasia Barrino, R&B singer and Broadway performer; Congresswoman and arts advocate Alma Adams; television producer Samm Art Williams; and playwright Howard Craft.