Yoruba Beadwork : Art of Nigeria
About the book
William Fagg Biography
William Buller Fagg (28 April 1914 – 10 July 1992) was a British curator and anthropologist. He was the Keeper of the Department of Ethnography at the British Museum (1969–1974), and pioneering historian of Yoruban and Nigerian art, with a particular focus on the art of Benin.
Family and backgroundWilliam Fagg was born in Upper Norwood, London to William Percy Fagg (d.1939), an antiquarian bookseller, and his wife Lilian Fagg (née Buller). His brother was the British archaeologist and museum curator Bernard Evelyn Buller Fagg.
EducationFagg was educated at Dulwich College before entering Magdalene College, Cambridge to study Classics, winning prizes for Latin hexameters and Latin epigrams. After graduating in 1936, the next year he went on to take a second degree in Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of Cambridge.
CareerFagg had a long and distinguished career at the British Museum. In 1938, he was appointed the Assistant Keeper of Ethnography and continued in this post until 1955, when he became the Deputy Keeper of Ethnography and, from 1969 to 1973, he was the Keeper of the Department of Ethnography. In 1969, he oversaw the move of the Department of Ethnography from the British Museum to Burlington Gardens where it was known as the Museum of Mankind. Between 1942 and 1945, Fagg had been seconded to the Industries and Manufactures Department of the Board of Trade. On his return to the British Museum after the end of the War, he was given curatorial responsibility for the African collections. Fagg spent a considerable amount of time engaged in fieldwork in Africa: Zaire 1949–1950; Nigeria 1953, 1958–1959, 1971, 1981; Cameroon 1966; Mali 1969. His brother, Bernard Fagg, had been working in Nigeria since 1939 and in 1952 he had established the first national museum in Jos, Nigeria, becoming the head of this institution in 1957 until Nigerian Independence. William Fagg purchased Benin art for the newly founded Lagos museum during his 1958–1959 trip to Nigeria. He donated his photographic negatives and related documentation to the Royal Anthropological Institute shortly before his death so they could be used for research purposes by others. William Fagg curated a number of important exhibitions, with a particular focus on Nigerian art. In 1960, he organised an exhibition in London to mark Nigerian Independence for the Art Council, UK. This exhibition travelled to Manchester, Bristol, Munich and Basle. It also led him to write the book ’Nigerian Images’ (1963) for which he won the Amaury Talbot Prize for African Anthropology. He curated exhibitions on Nigerian art at the First World Congress of Black Arts and Cultures in 1966 held in Dakar, Senegal. For his writings associated with this work he won the Grand Prize for the best work on African art and led to his being granted the CMG in 1967. After the move of the British Museum's Ethnographic collections to Burlington Gardens, Fagg curated many changin ... Read full biography
|Authors:||William Fagg Bryce Holcombe|
|Publisher:||Lund Humphries Publishers Ltd|
|Languages:||| English ||
|Publication date:||June 1, 1987|
|First Publication Date:||None|
|Publication City/Country:||London, United Kingdom|