Gregg Museum of art & design

The Gregg Museum has moved!

The Gregg Museum has moved to a temporary swing space. In our transition, we will have exhibitions on display in other galleries across Raleigh. Read below to find out where each exhibition will be. For more information about the Gregg Museum of Art & Design please call us at (919) 515-3503 or e-mail us at For more information about the move, please click here.




January 23 – May 9, 2014
Opening reception 6pm Thursday January 23
THEATER OF BELIEF:  Afro-Atlantic costuming and masking in large-format color photographs by Phyllis Galembo

Installed at the African American Cultural Center Gallery, 2nd Floor, Witherspoon Student Center, 2810 Cates Avenue, corner of Dan Allen Drive, Raleigh


A concurrent exhibition of Galembo’s work will be installed by the Gregg Museum in the Frankie G. Weems Art Gallery, Gaddy-Hamrick Art Center, Meredith College, 3800 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, running January 23 – March 23, 2014. Contact 919-760-8239, -8332, Find out more on the Meredith College website.


Theater of Belief

Ekpe Masquerede, Calabar, Nigeria, 2005 (from Calling the Spirits: African Ritual and Masquerade) courtesy Steven Kasher Gallery



THEATER OF BELIEF is accompanied by Documenting Disguise, a symposium on February 12-13, featuring a keynote lecture by Phyllis Galembo and a panel of other scholars and photographers.

Phyllis Galembo, professor of photography at the University at Albany-SUNY, brings a fashion photographer's highly developed technical skills and sensibilities to bear on ethnographic subject matter in a series of stunning portraits from West Africa. Her work will be shown jointly at Meredith College and NCSU’s African American Cultural Center in a collaboration organized by the Gregg Museum.


Galembo’s images, as noted by Roberta Smith in The New York Times, “. . . are both portraits and documents, but their combination of dignity, conviction and formal power . . . gives them a votive aspect similar to European paintings of saints or kings.”


Madam Juliana:  The Omu of Issele-Oku   A successful Western Igbo businesswoman, Madam Juliana displays her coiffure with jewelry and beaded attachments. Her large beaded necklaces and wristlets and white horse-tail fly whisk are other signs of her prominent position among titled female chiefs in the community.

Madam Juliana: The Omu of Issele-Oku


The costumes, masks and clothing worn by her subjects reveal an intense fascination with the creativity of masquerade that often surpasses the most elaborate examples of haute couture.  This has led to an exhibition record that includes not only many European and American museums of anthropology, art and natural history, but also at places like New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology.


Galembo is the author of Maske, Divine Inspiration from Benin to Bahia, Vodou: Visions and Voices of Haiti, and Dressed for Thrills: 100 Years of Halloween and Masquerade Costumes. For the past fourteen years she has photographed masking and costuming throughout Haiti, Louisiana, Brazil, Benin, Burkina Faso and Nigeria.





February 6 – May 23, 2014 
Opening reception 6pm Thursday February 6

REMNANTS OF THE FLOATING WORLD:  Japanese Art from the Permanent Collection
Installed at NCSU’s Historic Chancellor’s Residence, 1903 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, the future site of the Gregg Museum. Click to see a map of 1903 Hillsborough Street and parking nearby.  Open by appointment Monday - Friday 9am-5pm; call 919-513-7244 or 919-515-3503 or email Zoe Starling.


Floating World


Before long the Gregg Museum will move into its first stand-alone building, the historic Chancellor’s Residence at the northern end of Pullen Park.  Behind the handsome 1928 home is a walled garden that takes full advantage of the taller trees rising in the park beyond—a concept known to Japanese Zen gardeners as shakkei (借景), or “borrowed landscape.”


In planning the adaptation of the site for the new museum, great care will be taken to preserve and enhance the views of the park and its mature trees and shrubs as much as possible. At the same time, the grounds will be made more accessible for visitors to turn their attention to a natural setting where they will be able to read, talk, study or meditate among appealing works of outdoor art.


This kind of experience was described by Zen priest Asai Ryōi in his 1661 book, Ukiyo-monogatari (浮世物語, “Tales of the Floating World”), when he portrayed a sensation of “. . . living only for the moment, savoring the moon, the snow, the cherry blossoms and the maple leaves, singing songs, diverting oneself in just . . . letting oneself drift, buoyant and carefree, like a gourd floating along in a river current . . . .”


To celebrate the landscape surrounding its new site, REMNANTS OF THE FLOATING WORLD draws upon the treasures of the Gregg’s permanent collection to present an exhibition of Japanese ceramics, textiles, 19th century color woodblock prints (ukiyo-e, 浮世絵 , literally "pictures of the floating world"). The prints depict courtesans in elegant kimonos, warrior-heroes on military ventures, sinister ghosts and witches, theatrical performances and scenes of leisure—a delightful glimpse into the past as the Gregg prepares for its exciting future.


Floating World




Exhibition archives >

Exhibition catalogs >

Permanent Collection

The Gregg Museum of Art & Design maintains a permanent collection of more than 20,000 objects, including textiles, ceramics, folk and outsider art, photographs, furniture, ethnographic artifacts, architectural drawings, and fine art. Any student or member of the public can arrange to access and study them personally by contacting the museum ahead of time.

Learn more >