The Kinsey Foundation

The Bernard and Shirley Kinsey Foundation

for Arts and Education

a 501(c)3 non profit organization

The Bernard and Shirley Kinsey Foundation for Art and Education assists educational/cultural institutions with educating underserved youth and increasing public awareness about African American history and ancestry, by exposing and bridging cultural and societal gaps while addressing stereotypes and social ills. Utilizing The Kinsey African American Art and History Collection, an award-winning traveling museum exhibit consisting of primary source historical objects and art, our programming is designed to address the large gaps in education in the areas of American History/Arts and highlight the significant accomplishments of African Americans in building this nation. Our work is done through exhibitions, public programs, lectures, books, workshops and training seminars with schools and organizations.

If you want to change a person, the first thing you must do is to change their awareness of themselves, it starts with their consciousness. Our work provides youth with the historical information and context that empowers, improves self- esteem, raises success rates, lowers dropout rates, and reduces violent/criminal behavior. We believe that to a large degree, our vulnerable children do not succeed because they are not taught their rich history of achievement and contribution. African American history is not taught/viewed as the integral part of the fabric of American history that it is, and therefore African American children do not see themselves in the broader picture, narrative in America, or their unlimited potential. Children of all races benefit from this knowledge, as they are able to get a broader and more accurate knowledge of American history and draw inspiration from it; dispelling myths and shattering stereotypes, allowing them to view African Americans in a positive light. 

Special programming includes: an eighteen page Newspaper in Education (NIE), study guide, Power Point presentations, web site, videos, catalogues and an innovative delivery system developed with Apple Computer to reach students on iPads, iPods and iPhones.  In 2009, an African American History curriculum based on The Kinsey Collection was developed and implemented by the Florida Department of Education for 3.2 million students in grades K-12 statewide. That curriculum is currently being updated to meet the new National Core Standards, with the goal of expanding to school districts across the country, with great progress being made in California, with the support of the California Department of Education and Superintendents statewide.

With education as a goal, The Kinsey African American Art and History Collection has been on national tour since 2007, and has been seen by over 6 million visitors. The collection has exhibited in 24 cities, at notable institutions such as the California African American Museum, The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center (Cincinnati), The DuSable Museum of African American History (Chicago), The Norton Museum of Art (West Palm Beach), and the Smithsonian National Museum of American History (Washington, D.C.), to name a few. To date, over 6 million people have visited the exhibit. Currently, a portion of the collection is on display at EPCOT, Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida until 2018 (opened in 2013), where an estimated 15-20 million visitors will see it. The exhibit made its international debut in Hong Kong, at the University of Hong Kong Museum and Gallery on December 8th, 2016. Celebrities and personalities such as Whoopi Goldberg, Morgan Freeman, Kerry Washington, Katie Couric, Lance Gross, Diane Sawyer and Angela Bassett have endorsed and lent support in the exposure of the collection.

The Kinsey Collection is unique in that it is where art and history intersect, telling the often-untold stories African American story of achievement and contribution through primary source historical objects starting from 1595, as well as 2 and 3 dimensional artworks from the 19th, 20th, and 21st century. The collection has been cited in 3 national awards, including the President’s National Award for Museum and Library Services.