Hampton University Museum’s ‘Christ in the Manger’ Painting Selected for Virginia Association of Museums Top 10 Endangered Artifacts Program!

Help the Hampton University Museum win up to $1,000 in funds to conserve Francis Musangogwantamu’s “Christ in the Manger” through the Virginia Association of Museum’s Top 10 Endangered Artifacts program!



“Christ in the Manger” by Francis Musangogwantamu was donated to the Hampton University Museum by The Harmon Foundation in 1967. The Harmon Foundation was an organization based in New York City that supported and promoted the work of African and African American artists. For example, Musangogwantamu had his designs for a mural in a Catholic Cathedral rejected because he depicted Christ as an African man instead of a white man. In response to the notion that Christ could not be African, Musangogwantamu asked, “I wonder…if Christ is not universal?” This piece is meant for black Africans to see themselves in a religion that usually excludes them in its art. The message he is spreading is if we are all made in God’s image, there is no reason Christ cannot be depicted as African.

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"Christ in the Manger" by Francis Musangogwantamu