September 3, 2022 4:29 PM
Bessie Smith. Ruth Brown. Little Richard. Jimi Hendrix. These artists, and many other Black pioneers of music and film, set the tone for the generations that followed. Yet when we look at Black artistry across eras and how it fits contextually into history, it’s rarely overstated and often overlooked.
Years ago, memorabilia collector Ralph DeLuca set out to preserve a slice of Black performance history from the 1920s through the 1970s. The pinnacle of that work is Caldonia, an exhibit at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art, featuring 44 vintage posters chronicling the concerts and films of some of the greatest Black talents of the 20th century.