RETROSPECTIVE is a review of the latest news and happenings related to visual art by and about people of African descent, with the occasional nod to cultural matters. This week, Mark Bradford designed a museum logo; Sanford Biggers joined a new gallery; and Ralph Lemon was recognized with a dance award. New exhibitions opened featuring Mickalene Thomas, Nick Cave and Beverly Buchanan, among others. Plus, Kerry James Marshall was featured on a magazine cover and a documentary about the Broadway musical “Hamilton” is airing on PBS.


The new logo for ICA LA designed in collaboration with Mark Bradford was inspired by merchant posters found around Los Angeles, which over the years have been integral to the artist’s practice. | ICA LA



A Los Angeles institution has a new visual identity thanks to the creative vision of an artist who himself has become a local institution. In spring 2017, the Santa Monica Museum of Art will re-open in a new downtown location with a new name, the Institute of Contemporary Art Los Angeles (ICA LA), and a bold new logo and brand identity designed in collaboration with Los Angeles artist Mark Bradford.

Patricia Phelps de Cisneros and her husband, Gustavo A. Cisneros, announced they are giving 102 works of Latin American art to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where there are also establishing a research institute for the study of Latin American art.

sanford-biggers-credit_alex_fredundt_Artist Sanford Biggers (right), has joined Marianne Boesky Gallery in New York. Biggers, a Columbia University professor who is also represented by galleries in Chicago, Miami, London and Milan, has a solo exhibition “Subjective Cosmology” currently on view at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit.

Art Review published its annual Power 100 list of art world movers and shakers. Artsy broke the list down by race, gender and other demographic categories.

IMAGE: Sanford Biggers portrait. | Courtesy the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York. Photo credit by Alex Fredundt.



At Virginia Commonwealth University, VCUarts announced new 2016-17 faculty members, including Wesley Taylor (art foundation and graphic design), Massa Lemu and Irvin Morazan (sculpture + extended media), and Salem Tsegaye (Arts Research Institute).



Honored for Outstanding Production of “Scaffold Room” at The Kitchen, artist Ralph Lemon was among the choreographers and dancers, including Souleymane Badolo, Jamar Roberts, Donald McKayle and Joya Powell, recognized at the 2016 Bessie Awards, where Bill T. Jones oversaw the juried award.



Sonya Clark, whose work appears in the exhibition “Southern Accent: Seeking the American South in Contemporary Art” at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, unraveled a Confederate flag at the museum.

Composer Jason Moran curated a special perforance, “Causes and Cures: Music for Glass Armonica and Excited Piano Strings” by sound artist Camille Norment and electronic musician Craig Taborn at the Park Avenue Armory.

A number of new exhibitions opened this week, including Nick Cave at MASS MoCA; Mickalene Thomas at MoCA LA; Ronald Lockett at High Museum in Atlanta; and Beverly Buchanan at the Brooklyn Museum. EXPLORE MORE fall exhibitions

Julie Mehretu was in conversation with curator Christine Y. Kim this week at a Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) event where it was announced the artist would have a major solo show curated by Kim in 2017.



This weekend, the New York Times T magazine reports on seven “Greats” who are profoundly influencing our culture, including artist Kerry James Marshall, whose 35-year retrospective “Mastry” opens at The Met Breuer on Tuesday; First Lady Michelle Obama; and British author Zadie Smith. Each of the greats graces a cover of the special issue.

Exhibition catalogs about Shinique Smith, Rashid Johnson and Whitfield Lovell were recently published.

A number of new books have been published exploring the legacy of the Black Panther Party, including “Power to the People: The World of the Black Panthers” by Panther co-founder Bobby Seale with photographs by Stephen Shames; “The Black Panthers: Portraits from an Unfinished Revolution”: and “Black Against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party.”

In addition, chef Marcus Samuelsson has a new cookbook out: “The Red Rooster Cookbook: The Story of Food and Hustle in Harlem.”


Trailer for the documentary “Hamilton’s America,” which explores how the story came to life for the Broadway stage.



PBS is broadcasting a documentary about “Hamilton,” the Broadway sensation, on Sunday. Even if you were lucky enough to snag a ticket to Lin-Manuel Miranda‘s hip-hop inspired musical during performances with the original cast, “Hamilton’s America” is a must see. WATCH the full film

As a wave of art galleries including Gavin Brown’s Enterprise and Elizabeth Dee move uptown from Chelsea, Hyperallergic considered their role in gentrifying Harlem and how community can preserve its culture.

Fifty years after the founding of the Black Panthers, the New York Times explored one of the party’s most potent weapons—art—with Emory Douglas, the group’s minister of culture, along with Jordan Casteel and Fahamu Pecou, two contemporary artists inspired by his vision.

For the New York Times Race/Related newsletter, comedian John Leguizamo reviewed some serious Latin American history that should be household knowledge and explains why Latinos are galvanized to get out the vote in the 2016 election.

Hyperallergic interviewed art historian, curator and Columbia University professor Kellie Jones who recently won a MacArthur Foundation “genius” fellowship. Growing up, Jones’ parents were immersed in the arts and literary world, she said: “When I went off to college, I was kind of surprised that people didn’t know living artists. When you’re a kid you think the whole world is like your world. They thought all artists were dead. And I was like , ‘are you kidding, all artists are alive.’” CT


Hyperallergic spoke to art historian/curator Kellie Jones about how art can change things.


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