All Press Releases for August 25, 2020

William A. Fagaly Presented with the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award by Marquis Who's Who

Mr. Fagaly has been endorsed by Marquis Who's Who as a leader in the art industry.

His memoirs "The Nightcrawler King: Memoirs of an Art Museum Curator" are being published by the University Press of Mississippi with a release date of January 15, 2021.

    NEW ORLEANS, LA, August 25, 2020 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Marquis Who's Who, the world's premier publisher of biographical profiles, is proud to present William A. Fagaly with the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award. An accomplished listee, Mr. Fagaly celebrates many years' experience in his professional network, and has been noted for achievements, leadership qualities, and the credentials and successes he has accrued in his field. As in all Marquis Who's Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process.

Since coming of age, Mr. Fagaly has cultivated a passion for art, drawing inspiration from the works of his sister. Although he initially intended to study chemistry, he eventually opted to transfer to the art department at Indiana University Bloomington, where he received a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts in 1962 and 1967, respectively. He began his career as an assistant registrar at the art museum at Indiana University. In 1966, Mr. Fagaly traveled to New Orleans, where he joined the staff at the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA), a position he would hold for five decades.

During his time at NOMA, Mr. Fagaly excelled within several positions, including as the chief curator, assistant director of art and simultaneously as the Francoise Billion Richardson curator of African art. Upon accepting his initial position at NOMA, the museum housed almost no African art. Mr. Fagaly thus took it upon himself to ensure that the museum accurately reflected the city's roots and origins in African history.

Throughout his 50 years of service, Mr. Fagaly helped build one of the largest and finest collections of African art in the country, as well as pieces by contemporary and self-taught American artists. Under his direction, the museum doubled the size of its African art galleries in order to make room for all of the new exhibits. Mr. Fagaly's first solo curation for the museum took place in 1968 and was called "New Orleans Collects: African Art." After this first scarce display from local collectors, he subsequently curated "Shapes of Power, Belief, and Celebration: African Art from New Orleans Collections" in 1989, which consisted of museum and private New Orleans collections.

In addition to his work in art history and curation, Mr. Fagaly considered his exhibitions as a form of his own art creations. With this, he distinguished himself as an artist in his own right. He first created "Louisiana Folk Painting" at the New York's Museum of American Folk Art (now the American Folk Art Museum) in 1973. He created another traveling exhibition at that institution in 2004 "Tools of Her Ministry: The Art of Sister Gertrude Morgan" with the accompanying book published by Rizzoli. As a dedicated artist, he has exhibited work in his adopted hometown of New Orleans, as well as Portland, Oregon, and Laramie, Wyoming. Most recently, Mr. Fagaly served as a nominator for the Rauschenberg Foundation SEED program and as a selector for two years for the Rauschenberg Foundation Residency Program. He also served as an author and the editor of "Ancestors of Congo Square: African Art New Orleans Museum Art" published by Scala in 2011.

For his accomplishments throughout his career, he received the Mayor's Arts Award from the City of New Orleans, the Governor's Arts Award from the Louisiana State Arts Council, the Charles E. Dunbar Junior Career Service Award from the Louisiana Civil Service League and the Isaac Delgado Memorial Award from the Fellows of the New Orleans Museum of Art. In 2006 the French government bestowed on him the honorific tile of Chevalier dans l'order des Arts et des Lettres. In retirement, Mr. Fagaly was named curator emeritus by the New Orleans Museum of Art and has maintained his professional and civic activity with his on-going memberships on the boards of the Newcomb Art Museum, the Congo Square Preservation Society, Prospect New Orleans (where is designated as founding board emeritus), and New Orleans Center for Creative Arts High School. In addition, he currently serves as a founding board member of ARCAthens. He attributes his professional success to Dr. Roy Seiber, who mentored the younger man after his arrival in New Orleans.

His memoirs "The Nightcrawler King: Memoirs of an Art Museum Curator" are being published by the University Press of Mississippi with a release date of January 15, 2021.

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