The Oakland University Art Collection features over a thousand objects including African Art, Chinese Scrolls, ethnographic art, prints, and modern and contemporary paintings, works on paper, and sculpture.

Masks, Headdresses, Yoruba Twin Figures, Granary Doors, Senufo and Dogon Sculpture

G. Mennen Williams African Art Collection

Gerhard Mennen “Soapy” Williams, Michigan Governor (1949-1961), built an extensive African art collection while serving as Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs (1961-66). The collection consists of over two hundred objects, some from the 19th century, most from the first half of 20th century. The majority originate from West Africa in what is now Nigeria, Mali, Côte d'Ivoire, Burkino Faso, Ghana and Benin.

Scroll Paintings, Calligraphies, Stone Rubbings

Dr. and Mrs. Amitendranath Tagore Chinese Art Collection

Before becoming a professor at Oakland, Amitendranath Tagore first went to China in 1947 aged 27. There began collecting what are now very rare works from the first half of the 20th century, including scrolls by Qi Bashi, Qi Gong, Zong Qi, Zong Qi Xiang, and Xu Beihong. The collection contains 29 scrolls, 11 calligraphies spanning a range of calligraphic styles, and 15 rubbings of Chinese stone monuments.

Tibetan Art, Sepik River Carvings, Asmat Statuary

Dr. Berton London Ethnographic Art Collection

Dr. Berton London began collecting art as a young army doctor in post-war Germany during the early nineteen-fifties. Thus, began a life of intrepid curiosity and collecting in some of the remotest regions on earth: New Guinea, Tibet, Kenya, Mali, Myanmar, Cambodia, Yemen and India. The collection includes African masks, Tibetan Thangka paintings, Burmese marionette puppetry, Indian bronze deities, West African Makonde carvings and Maasai objects from Kenya.

20th and 21st Century Paintings, sculpture and prints

The Oakland University Art Collection

The Oakland University Art Collection comprises twentieth and twenty-first paintings by artists such as Lyonel Feininger, Richard Artschwager, Alex Katz, Al Held, Malcolm Morley, Terry Winters, Fernando Botero, Carlos Rolón, Michael Luchs, and Gordon Newton. The collection also includes the G. Mennen Williams African Art Collection, the Dr. and Mrs. Amitendranath Tagore Chinese Art Collection, Carl F. Barnes, Jr. and Anna M. Barnes Print Collection, and the Dr. Berton London Ethnographic Art Collection.

Etchings, Lithographs, Woodcuts, Engravings

Carl F. Barnes, Jr. and Anna M. Barnes Print Collection

Carl and Anna Barnes made a gift of their collection of 500 prints in 1999; Dr. Barnes was then Professor of Art History and Archaeology. Parts of the collection were first exhibited at Oakland in 1984. The nexus of the collection had been architectural prints, but later included almost the entire print oeuvre of the English printmaker and portrait painter Gerald Leslie Brockhurst. Collection highlights include works by Dürer, Piranesi, Hokusai, Hogarth, Wm. Blake, Delacroix, Whistler, John Sloan, and Thomas Hart Benton.