The Colonel’s Cabinet

Copied Renée Stout, The Colonel's Cabinet, 1991-1994, mixed media: carpet, chair, painting, and cabinet with found and handmade objects, overall: 67 126050 12 in. (171.5152.4128.3 cm.), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson, 1994.45.1A-MMM, © 1994, Renee Stout

Artwork Details

The Colonel’s Cabinet
Not on view
overall: 67 126050 12 in. (171.5152.4128.3 cm.)
© 1994, Renee Stout
Credit Line
Museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson
Mediums Description
mixed media: carpet, chair, painting, and cabinet with found and handmade objects
  • Object — art object — sculpture
  • Object — furniture — chair
  • Object — written matter — book
  • Object — furniture — cabinet
  • Object — other — container
  • Object — musical instrument — guitar
  • Object — written matter — map
  • Object — art object — photograph
  • Object — weapon — dagger
Object Number

Artwork Description

The Colonel’s Cabinet is a narrative of exploration and memory that traces the life of one Colonel Frank. Like the gentleman travelers of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries who created “cabinets of curiosities” filled with artifacts of distant people and places, the fictitious Colonel Frank collected small treasures to remind himself of where he had been and individuals he had met. An invented persona based on Stout’s father, who, she said, brought the world to her shy and introspective mother, the colonel also reflects Stout’s own search for a personal history.

African American Art: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Right Era, and Beyond, 2012


Media - 1995.22.1 - SAAM-1995.22.1_1 - 65784
African American Art in the 20th Century
January 18, 2019January 18, 2019
The Smithsonian American Art Museum is home to one of the most significant collections of African American art in the world.