KARA WALKER, “40 Acres of Mules,” 2015

 

THE MUSEUM OF MODERN ART’S collection boasts dozens of new additions by African American artists. Over the past two years the museum has acquired paintings by Mark Bradford, Kerry James Marshall, Chris Ofili, and Faith Ringgold; drawings by Palmer Hayden, Adrian Piper, and Kara Walker; sculptures by Terry Adkins and Kevin Beasley; media and performance works by British artist John Akomfrah and Jacolby Satterwhite; and photographs by Romare Bearden, David Hartt, and Andres Serrano.

MoMA’s fiscal year 2016 annual report lists the institution’s assets, including 2015 and 2016 acquisitions. More than 1,000 items of art have been brought into the collection—250 drawings and prints; 190 films; 135 media and performance art works; 49 sculptures and paintings; and 433 photographs. More than 50 works of art by African American artists are among the acquisitions, notable in terms of further broadening the diversity of the museum’s collection, but nominal considering the group represents about five percent of the new purchases and gifts. (In addition to the 1,047 works of art, the museum acquired 184 architecture and 848 design works.)

About 50 works of art by African American artists are among the acquisitions, notable in terms of broadening the diversity of the museum’s collection, but nominal considering the group represents about five percent of the new purchases and gifts.

Scanning the list, significant selections are found beyond the major paintings and interesting details emerge. The museum purchased “Lumumba,” the 2000 film by Raoul Peck about Patrice Lumumba, the first democratically elected leader of the Congo. Peck’s documentary “I Am Not Your Negro,” adapted from an unpublished James Baldwin’s manuscript, is currently enjoying widespread critical acclaim and is nominated for a 2017 Academy Award.

A major painting and the video installation “Spiderman” by Los Angeles artist Mark Bradford were donated anonymously to the museum. The works were featured in “Be Strong Boquan,” the 2015 exhibition at Hauser & Wirth, his first in New York since joining the gallery. In “Spiderman,” Bradford takes on the persona of a comedian, discussing AIDS and other social and cultural issues with candor and humor. Two works by Kara Walker were acquired—”40 Acres of Mules” (2015), a charcoal triptych, and “Porgy & Bess” (2013), an illustrated book with 16 lithographs. MoMA now owns nearly 80 works by Walker.

MoMA’s acquisition of Faith Ringgold’s 1967 painting “American People Series #20: Die” has been well-publicized. The museum also owns four drawings made in preparation for the painting and five political posters and offset lithographs dating from 1967-72 by Ringgold. Promoting women’s rights, defending the Black Panthers, and deeming America the “United States of Attica” given the nation’s record of violence, the works are particularly timely additions given the renewed state of protest in the country and the creativity of the signs and slogans accompanying the demonstrations. A list of recent museum acquisitions by black artists follows. CT

 

TOP IMAGE: KARA WALKER, “40 Acres of Mules,” 2015 (charcoal on three sheets of paper). | Acquired through the generosity of Candace King Weir, Agnes Gund, and Jerry I. Speyer and Katherine Farley. © 2016 Kara Walker. Photo courtesy the artist and Victoria Miro Gallery, London

 


This PALMER HAYDEN (1890 – 1973) painting, “The Blue Nile,” 1964 (watercolor and gouache on thick wove paper), was purchased from Swann Auction Galleries at its April 7, 2016, sale for $42,500 (including fees), an artist record.

 
PRINTS & DRAWINGS

Roy DeCarava. Self‐Portrait. 1950. Screenprint, composition: 10 1/2 x 8 1/4″ (26.7 x 21 cm); sheet: 11 1/2 x 9 5/16″ (29.2 x 23.6 cm). Publisher: Roy DeCarava. Printer: Roy DeCarava. Edition: approx. 30–45. Gift of Anne Kurakin (Transferred from Department of Drawings and Prints study collection to MoMA permanent collection)

Roy DeCarava. Jake, Age Seven. 1946. Screenprint, composition: 14 5/16 x 9 3/16″ (36.3 x 23.4 cm); sheet: 17 13/16 x 11 7/8″ (45.3 x 30.2 cm). Publisher: Roy DeCarava. Printer: Roy DeCarava. Edition: 60. Gift of Anne Kurakin (Transferred from Department of Drawings and Prints study collection to MoMA permanent collection)

Roy DeCarava. No Work Today. 1946. Screenprint, composition: 13 13/16 x 10 1/8″ (35.1 x 25.7 cm); sheet: 16 13/16 x 13 7/8″ (42.7 x 35.3 cm). Publisher: Roy DeCarava. Printer: Roy DeCarava. Edition: 65. Gift of Anne Kurakin (Transferred from Department of Drawings and Prints study collection to MoMA permanent collection)

Roy DeCarava. Close up. 1949–50. Screenprint, composition: 9 1/2 x 11 9/16″ (24.1 x 29.3 cm); sheet (irreg.): 12 5/8 x 18 3/16″ (32 x 46.2 cm). Publisher: Roy DeCarava. Printer: Roy DeCarava. Edition: 32. Gift of Anne Kurakin (Transferred from Department of Drawings and Prints study collection to MoMA permanent collection)

Roy DeCarava. Palma. 1947. Screenprint, composition: 10 13/16 x 9 1/2″ (27.4 x 24.1 cm); sheet: 14 5/8 x
10 11/16″ (37.2 x 27.1 cm). Publisher: Roy DeCarava. Printer: Roy DeCarava. Edition: approx. 30–45. Gift of Anne Kurakin (Transferred from Department of Drawings and Prints study collection to MoMA permanent collection)

Palmer Hayden. The Blue Nile. 1964. Watercolor, gouache, and pencil on paper, 21 1/2 × 27 7/8″ (54.6 × 70.8 cm). Committee on Drawings and Prints Fund

Kerry James Marshall. Satisfied Man. 2015. Woodcut, composition: 24 × 18 1/16″ (61 × 45.8 cm); sheet: 28 3/16 × 22 3/16″ (71.6 × 56.4 cm). Publisher: Kerry James Marshall, Chicago. Printer: Kerry James Marshall, Chicago. Edition: 15. John B. Turner Fund

Chris Ofili. Black Shunga. 2008–15. Portfolio of 11 etchings with gravure on pigmented paper, plate: 18 5/16 × 10 3/8″ (46.5 × 26.3 cm); sheet: 26 3/8 × 17 1/2″ (67 × 44.5 cm). Publisher: Two Palms Press, New York. Printer: Two Palms Press, New York. Edition: 20. The Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III Endowment

Howardena Pindell. Constellations. 2015. Etching, plate: 17 7/8 × 17 7/8″ (45.4 × 45.4 cm); sheet: 29 3/4 × 22″ (75.5 × 55.9 cm). Publisher: Center for Contemporary Printmaking, Norwalk, CT. Printer: Center for Contemporary Printmaking, Norwalk, CT. Edition: proof aside from the edition of 100. Gift of the artist

Adrian Piper. The Barbie Doll Drawings. 1967. 35 drawings: ink and pencil on notebook paper, each: 8 1/2 × 5 1/2″ (21.6 × 14 cm). Acquired through the generosity of Catie and Donald Marron, The Friends of Education of The Museum of Modern Art, Carol and Morton Rapp, Committee on Drawings and Print Fund, and Richard S. Zeisler Bequest (by exchange)

Faith Ringgold. Die: Drawings No. 1, 2, 4, and 4. 1967. Four drawings, dimensions vary. The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Endowment for Prints

Faith Ringgold. Committee to Defend the Black Panthers. 1970. Cut‐and‐pasted colored paper, pencil, and press‐type on paper, 33 3/4 × 27 3/4″ (85.7 × 70.5 cm). The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Endowment for Prints

Faith Ringgold. Freedom Woman Now (Political Posters). 1971. Cut‐and‐pasted colored paper on board, 30 × 20″ (76.2 × 50.8 cm). The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Endowment for Prints

Faith Ringgold. The People’s Flag Show. 1971. Offset lithograph, composition and sheet: 18 × 24″ (45.7 × 61 cm). The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Endowment for Prints

Faith Ringgold. Woman Free Yourself. 1971. Offset lithograph, composition and sheet: 24 1/16 × 18 1/8″ (61.1 × 46.1 cm). The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Endowment for Prints

Faith Ringgold. United States of Attica. 1972. Offset lithograph, composition and sheet: 21 5/8 × 27 3/8″ (55 × 69.6 cm). The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Endowment for Prints

Kara Walker. 40 Acres of Mules. 2015. Charcoal on three sheets of paper, overall 105 x 216″ (266.7 x 548.6 cm). Acquired through the generosity of Candace King Weir, Agnes Gund, and Jerry I. Speyer and Katherine Farley

Kara Walker. Porgy & Bess. 2013. Illustrated book with 16 lithographs, page (each): 12 5/8 × 9 3/4″ (32.1 × 24.8 cm); overall (closed): 13 1/8 × 10 1/4 × 1 1/2″ (33.3 × 26 × 3.8 cm). Publisher: Arion Press, San Francisco, CA. Printer: Derriere L’Etoile Studios, New York. Edition: 400. Gift of Wolfgang Wittrock (by exchange)

 


FAITH RINGGOLD, “The People’s Flag Show,” 1971 (offset lithograph, composition and sheet). | The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Endowment for Prints, © 2017 Faith Ringgold/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

 
FILM

Lumumba. Directed by Raoul Peck. 2000. 35mm lm (color, sound), 114 min. Purchase from Zeitgeist Films

 
MEDIA & PERFORMANCE ART

John Akomfrah. The Unfinished Conversation. 2012. Three‐channel video (color, sound), 45 min. The Contemporary Arts Council of the Museum of Modern Art

Mark Bradford. Spiderman. 2015. Video (color, sound), 6:03 min. Anonymous gift

David Hartt. Interval. 2014. Two‐channel video (color, sound), 15:07 min. Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

David Hartt. Interval I. 2014. Archival pigment print, 36 × 54″ (91.4 × 137.2 cm). Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

David Hartt. Interval II. 2014. Archival pigment print, 36 × 54″ (91.4 × 137.2 cm). Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

David Hartt. Interval VII. 2014. Archival pigment print, 36 × 54″ (91.4 × 137.2 cm). Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

Jacolby Satterwhite. Country Ball 1989–2012. 2012. Video animation (color, sound), 12:38 min. Acquired through the generosity of Bernard Lumpkin and Carmine Boccuzzi

Jacolby Satterwhite. Reifying Desire 2. 2011. Video animation (color, sound), 8:25 min. Acquired through the generosity of Jeremiah Joseph

Jacolby Satterwhite. Reifying Desire 3. 2012. Video animation (color, sound), 17 min. Acquired through the generosity of Jeremiah Joseph

Jacolby Satterwhite. Reifying Desire 4: Model It. 2009. Video animation (color, sound), 6:29 min. Acquired through the generosity of Jeremiah Joseph

Jacolby Satterwhite. Reifying Desire 5. 2013. Video animation (color, sound), 8:45 min. Acquired through the generosity of Jeremiah Joseph

Jacolby Satterwhite. Reifying Desire 6. 2013. Video animation (color, sound), 24:04 min. Acquired through the generosty of Jeremiah Joseph

Jacolby Satterwhite. The Matriarch’s Rhapsody. 2012. Video animation (color, sound), 43:47 min. Acquired through the generosity of Jeremiah Joseph

Jacolby Satterwhite. Forest Nymph. 2009. Video animation (color, sound), 14 min. Acquired through the generosity of Jeremiah Joseph

Jacolby Satterwhite. Model It. Video animation (color, sound). Acquired through the generosity of Jeremiah Joseph

 


KERRY JAMES MARSHALL, “Untitled (Policeman),” 2015 (synthetic polymer paint on PVC panel with plexi frame). © 2016 Kerry James Marshall. Photo courtesy the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York via MoMA

 
PAINTING & SCULPTURE

Terry Adkins. Dark Night. 1987–88. Copper, wood, tin, rawhide, and brass, 22 × 12 × 14″ (55.9 × 30.5 × 35.6 cm). Gift of Peter J. Cohen

Kevin Beasley. Untitled (Sea). 2016. House dresses, resin and berglass, 82 × 96 × 26 1/2″ (208.3 × 243.8 × 67.3 cm). Gift of Marie‐Josée and Henry R. Kravis

Mark Bradford. Let’s Walk to the Middle of the Ocean. 2015. Paper, acrylic paint, and acrylic varnish on canvas, 102 × 144″ (259.1 × 365.8 cm). Anonymous gift

William H. Johnson. Children. 1941. Oil and pencil on wood panel, 17 1/2 × 12 1/2″ (44.5 × 31.8 cm). Purchase and gift of Agnes Gund and Marlene Hess and James D. Zirin

Kerry James Marshall. Untitled (Policeman). 2015. Synthetic polymer paint on PVC panel with plexi frame, 60 × 60″ (152.4 × 152.4 cm). Gift of Mimi Haas in honor of Marie‐Josée Kravis

Chris Ofili. The Raising of Lazarus. 2007. Oil and charcoal on canvas, 109 3/4 × 79″ (278.8 × 200.7 cm). Hillman Periodicals Fund (by exchange)

Faith Ringgold. American People Series #20: Die. 1967. Oil on canvas, two panels, 72 × 144″ (182.9 × 365.8 cm). Purchase, and gift of Sarah Peter

 


WILLIAM H. JOHNSON, “Children,” 1941 (oil and pencil on wood panel). | Gift of Abby Aldrich Rockefeller (by exchange), Agnes Gund, and Marlene Hess and James D. Zirin

 
PHOTOGRAPHY

Romare Bearden. Other Mysteries. 1964. Gelatin silver print (photostat), 30 1/4 × 30 3/8″ (76.8 × 77.2 cm). Purchase

Romare Bearden. Prevalence of Ritual/Conjur Woman No. 1. 1964. Gelatin silver print (photostat), 36 5/8 × 28 3/8″ (93 × 72.1 cm). Purchase

Romare Bearden. Train Whistle Blues No. 1. 1964. Gelatin silver print (photostat), 29 × 37 1/2″ (73.7 × 95.3 cm). Purchase

Romare Bearden. The Dove. 1971. Gelatin silver print (photostat), 50 1/2 × 70 1/2″ (128.3 × 179.1 cm). Purchase

Roy DeCarava. Graduation. 1949. Gelatin silver print, 12 3/4 x 19 1/8″ (32.4 x 48.5 cm). Purchase

David Hartt. Beauty of the Week at The Johnson Publishing Company Headquarters, Chicago, Illinois. 2011. Pigmented inkjet print, 30 × 40″ (76.2 × 101.6 cm). Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

David Hartt. Eunice Johnson’s Office at The Johnson Publishing Company Headquarters, Chicago, Illnois I. 2011. Pigmented inkjet print, 48 × 64″ (121.9 × 162.6 cm). Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

David Hartt. Lounge at The Johnson Publishing Company Headquarters, Chicago, Illnois. 2011. Pigmented inkjet print, 48 × 64″ (121.9 × 162.6 cm). Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

David Hartt. Test Kitchen at The Johnson Publishing Company Headquarters, Chicago, Illnois II. 2011. Pigmented inkjet print, 30 × 40″ (76.2 × 101.6 cm). Fund for the Twenty‐First Century

Zwelethu Mthethwa. Untitled. 2005. Chromogenic color print, 25 × 34″ (63.5 × 86.4 cm). Gift of Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz

Andres Serrano. Piss. 1987. Chromogenic color print, 40 × 60″ (101.6 × 152.4 cm). The Abramson Collection. Gift of Stephen and Sandra Abramson

Andres Serrano. Blood. 1987. Chromogenic color print, 40 × 60″ (101.6 × 152.4 cm). The Abramson Collection. Gift of Stephen and Sandra Abramson

 

VIEW FULL LIST of MoMA’s FY 2016 acquisition

 


DAVID HARTT, “Beauty of the Week at The Johnson Publishing Company Headquarters, Chicago, Illinois,” 2011 (pigmented inkjet print). | Fund for the Twenty‐First Century © 2017 David Hartt

When Johnson Publishing Co., publisher of Ebony and Jet magazines, sold its historic downtown Chicago headquarters in 2010, David Hartt took photographs of the interior in 2011, before the company vacated the building.

 


KEVIN BEASLEY, “Untitled (Sea),” 2016 (house dresses, resin and berglass). | Gift of Marie‐Josée and Henry R. Kravis

This sculpture is from a body of work by New York-based Kevin Beasley that is currently on view at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. “Hammer Projects: Kevin Beasley” presents “an elaborate environment inspired by Bernini’s Baroque altarpiece in Saint Peter’s Basilica and an infamous image of Black Panther Huey P. Newton.”

 


MARK BRADFORD, “Let’s Walk to the Middle of the Ocean,” 2015 (paper, acrylic paint, and acrylic varnish on canvas). | Anonymous gift

Los Angeles artist Mark Bradford debuted this painting in “Be Strong Boquan.” The 2015 exhibition at Hauser & Wirth was his first in New York since joining the gallery.

 


FAITH RINGGOLD, “American People Series #20: Die,” 1967 (Oil on canvas, two panels). Purchase, and gift of Sarah Peter. © 2016 Faith Ringgold/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Faith Ringgold’s “American People Series #20: Die,” an imaginative depiction of the race riots that engulfed the United States in the 1960s, is currently on view at MoMA in “From the Collection: 1960–1969” through March 12, 2017.