Thomas K. Seligman Archive

Thomas Seligman, photographer. Portrait of Chemo (Saidi Oumba's daughter). 1980. Image and data provided by Thomas Seligman

Scholar/photographer Thomas K. Seligman has contributed more than 4,000 images of Liberia, New Guinea, Melanesia and theTuareg people to the Artstor Digital Library.
 
The selection in Artstor centers on the Tuareg, a nomadic people of the Sahara who live throughout southern Algeria and Libya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, and Burkina Faso. The Tuareg form part of the larger indigenous African group of the Berbers, and are sometimes referred to as the "Blue People of the Sahara" because of the indigo color of their traditional clothing. Seligman's field photography in the Digital Library also extends to Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu.
 
Thomas K. Seligman is the former long-time director (1991-2011) of the the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University. Among the many exhibitions Seligman has curated are "Timbuktu to Capetown," a celebration of African art and culture, and "The Art of Being Tuareg: Sahara Nomads in a Modern World." Seligman was the founding curator of the Department of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, and he has done fieldwork among the Tuareg for decades. He has published and lectured widely and he has worked on behalf of cultural communities both at home and internationally.