September 19, 2016
Jack Mitchell Archives at the Smithsonian NMAAHC
Saturday September 17, 2016 Jack Mitchell Archives Executive Director Craig B. Highberger
and Associate Director, Dr. Andrew R. La Barbera attended the Smithsonian National Museum
of African American History and Culture’s Collection Donor Preview and Reception in Washington D.C. (Below)
Lonnie G. Bunch III, Founding Director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture
introduces the curators to the donors and guests in attendance, Saturday September 17, 2016 (Below)
In June 2016 the museum acquired twenty-five Jack Mitchell photographs of important African American
artists and performers, a number of which were donations. But there is a previous acquisition that is also
an important part of the museum. In August 2012 the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation, Inc. purchased
the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Jack Mitchell Collection.
Jack Mitchell was Alvin Ailey’s close friend and photographer of his dance company from the time of its
founding until Mitchell’s retirement in 1995. Craig B. Highberger put together the collection acquisition in 2012
with (then) Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation Executive Director Sharon Gersten Luckman.
August 8, 2012 (photo below) Jack Mitchell Archives Executive Director Craig B. Highberger delivers the Jack Mitchell
Alvin Ailey Collection to the Ailey, as Alvin Ailey Artistic Director Robert Battle, Associate Artistic
Director Masazumi Chaya, and Ailey II Artistic Director Emeria Sylvia Waters watch. Photo © Claudia Schreier.
(Photo below) Alvin Ailey Artistic Director Robert Battle, Associate Artistic Director Masazumi Chaya, Ailey II Artistic Director
Emeria Sylvia Waters, Executive Director Sharon Gersten Luckman, and Jack Mitchell Archives Executive Director
Craig B. Highberger, August 8, 2012. Photo © Caludia Schreier
The entire Jack Mitchell Alvin Ailey collection is housed at the Smithsonian NMAAHC, where a wall of vintage
Jack Mitchell Alvin Ailey Company photographs are part of the museum's permanent exhibition.
The museum opens to the public Saturday September 24.