ABC News - Paul R. Jones, a collector of African-American art who donated troves of works to universities in Delaware and Alabama, has died. He was 81.
Jones died in Atlanta on Tuesday after a brief illness, said University of Alabama spokeswoman Angie Estes. The university established an art collection in Jones' name after receiving some 1,700 pieces valued at $5 million in 2008.
Despite humble beginnings in Alabama and never independently wealthy, Jones began buying pieces in the 1960s after noting African-American art was underrepresented in public galleries.
As the drawings, paintings, photographs, sculptures and other works grew into the hundreds, part of his collection was exhibited at the University of Delaware in 1993. He later made a gift of several hundred works to the school. Read more.
"My goal has been to incorporate African-American art into American art," he told The Tuscaloosa News in 2008 when he made his donation to the University of Alabama with a plan for it to be part of the curriculum.