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Times-Picayune: “New museum, meeting place celebrate influential New Orleans artist John T. Scott”

John Scott Center

The late John T. Scott was probably the most influential New Orleans artist of the 20th century. His monumental abstract sculptures can still be found across the cityscape, and the generations of artists he taught, in his 42 years as a Xavier University professor, are carrying his legacy forward.

Scott’s role as a star of the local art scene was already well established by 1992, when he was anointed with a “genius grant” from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, expanding his reputation nationally.

Now, a new museum and meeting center in the Central Business District provide a place to commune with Scott’s art, for those already well aware of his cultural contribution and those who are discovering him for the first time.

The Helis Foundation John Scott Center is located at 938 Lafayette St. in an 1867 brick structure, known as Turners’ Hall, that was built by German immigrants as a gymnasium, dance venue and theater. It later became a sort of trade school operated by Tulane University, and later still was home to a commercial printing press that produced The Jewish Ledger newspaper.

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