Accumulating Histories: African Art from the Charles B. Benenson Collection at the Yale University Art Gallery


Frederick John Lamp, Amanda M. Maples, and Laura M. Smalligan With essays by Michael Kan and Susan Vogel

This comprehensive publication celebrates one of the largest and most significant bequests in the Yale University Art Gallery’s history: the exceptional Charles B. Benenson, B.A. 1933, Collection of African art. Bequeathed from 2002–4, this gift of 586 objects nearly tripled the Gallery’s holdings in this area, transforming what was once a modest installation into one of the nation’s premier university collections of African art. Accumulating Histories features full cataloguing data (including culture, date, provenance, bibliography, and exhibition history) and beautiful color reproductions of every object. In a departure from traditional collections catalogues, essays recount the testimony of Benenson’s family, close friends, professional advisors, and African art dealers to examine the history of his stunning collection. 


Not merely a portrayal of an exceptional collection, but also a detailed account of the unusual man who created it … fascinating and compelling … [a] very colorful, unorthodox, and formidable collector. Each page in the catalogue section of this volume confirms the importance of his collection.” —Pascal James Imperato, African Studies Review