Latest News in Black Art features news updates and developments in the world of art and related culture

Artist Portia Zvavahera. | Photo by Mario Todeschini. © Portia Zvavahera. Courtesy David Zwirner and Stevenson


Zimbabwean artist Portia Zvavahera (above) is now represented by David Zwirner in collaboration with Stevenson Gallery of Cape Town and Amsterdam. David Zwirner presented “Ndakavata pasi ndikamutswa nekuti anonditsigira,” her first solo exhibition in Europe at its London space in 2020. Introducing Zvavahera, the gallery said her work “gives form to emotions that manifest from other realms and dimensions beyond the domains of everyday life and thought. Her vivid imagery is rooted in the cornerstones of our earthly existence—life and death, pain and pleasure, isolation and connection, and love and loss. These deeply personal visions are realized through layers of vibrant color and ornate, veil-like patterns that the artist builds up into palimpsestic surfaces through a combination of expressive brushwork and elaborate printmaking techniques.” On June 10, her work will be featured in Program, a livestreaming event presented in David Zwirner’s online viewing room. The gallery has locations in New York, London, Paris and Hong Kong and represents more than 70 artists, including Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Stan Douglas, Kerry James Marshall, Oscar Murillo, Chris Ofili, and the estates of Roy DeCarava and Noah Davis. A solo show of new work by Zvavahera will be on view in New York this fall.

Bradley Ertaskiran of Montreal (Québec), Canada, announced its representation of Preston Pavlis (at right), whose paintings of solitary figures incorporate embroidered fabric. According to the gallery, the intersection of materials “represents his interest in the fusion of painting and textiles as a means to explore narrative, form and color.” “Still ready to curse and rage,” Pavlis’s first solo exhibition with the gallery, opens June 23. The California-born artist lives and works in Edmonton, Canada.


IMAGE: Right, Artist Preston Pavlis. | Courtesy Bradley Ertaskiran


The New York Public Library announced the appointment of Joy Bivins as director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem. She begins in the new role June 21. | Culture Type

Allison Glenn was named senior curator and director of public art at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. She officially joins the museum Aug. 1. | Culture Type

The Delaware Art Museum added seven new members to its board of trustees, including Fatimah Conley, interim chief diversity officer at the University of Delaware; Jeanana Lloyd, manager of talent optimization and planning at Christiana Care; Eric Smith, director of operations at Carvertise; and Susan Thomas, founder of IAM for Social Good, an online platform for strategic philanthropy serving women and girls. | Press Release

In Boston, Now + There curates public art projects in neighborhoods throughout the city. In early May, the nonprofit announced three new board members, including Sabrina Dorsainvil. An artist, designer, and illustrator, she serves as director of civic design for the City of Boston’s Office of New Urban Mechanics. Now + There also introduced its first-ever curatorial fellow, Romy St. Hilaire.

Awards & Honors

Announced in November 2019 and delayed due to COVID-19, Los Angeles-based artist Betye Saar was awarded the 2020 Hahn Prize via Zoom on May 30 and her related exhibition opened at Mu­se­um Lud­wig in Cologne, Germany, on June 1.

The Dallas Museum of Art presented its 2021 Awards to Artists to 12 artists, all from Texas, including taylor barnes and Ari Brielle, who received Arch and Anne Giles Kimbrough Fund Awards (up to $3,500). | Press Release


KEHINDE WILEY, Installation view of “Saint Adelaide,” 2014, The Stained Glass Museum, Cambridgeshire, UK. | © The Stained Glass Museum, Courtesy the Stained Glass Museum


The Stained Glass Museum has acquired “Saint Adelaide” (2014), an eight-foot-tall stained-glass portrait of a young man by Kehinde Wiley. Now on permanent display in the museum’s main gallery, the work is the first freestanding stained glass portrait by Wiley to enter a museum collection and the first by a self-identified queer Black artist added to the holdings of The Stained Glass Museum, which is housed in a cathedral in Cambridgeshire, UK. | Hyperallergic

Early last year, Vielmetter Los Angeles presented “Karl Haendel: Double Dominant” featuring a series of photorealistic drawings by Karl Haendel. He portrayed fellow Los Angeles artists whose work inspires him, capturing the dominant hand used in creating their work. “If you take a quick glance at one of these drawings, it looks like a right and left hand. Look more closely and you realize that’s not the case–it’s the same hand, and it’s somehow interleaved with itself,” Haendel wrote about the series. African American artists Edgar Arceneaux, EJ Hill, and Rodney McMillian are among the figures he featured. One of the works, “Double Dominant 4 (Rodney McMillian)” (2018), was recently acquired by the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles.


IMAGE: KARL HAENDEL, “Double Dominant 4 (Rodney McMillian),” 2018 (pencil on paper, 103 x 84 inches / 261.6 x 213.4 cm). | © Karl Haendel, Collection of Hammer Museum; Los Angeles, CA, USA

More News

Black Lives Matter Co-Founder Patrisse Cullors, a performance artist and co-founder of Crenshaw Dairy Mart, is stepping down from the Black Lives Matter Movement Foundation. | Associated Press

Artist Paul Rucker spoke out about racism in arts administration, detailing his experience working for the Office of Arts & Culture for the City of Seattle, from 2007-12. He currently serves as curator for creative collaboration at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond. | Artnet News

Opening in September, the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles “has used the last two years to rethink and refine the exhibition spaces, making sure to acknowledge the flawed history of film and to give women as well as people of color their due.” Jacqueline Stewart, a Chicago film scholar, is the museum’s chief artistic and programming officer. | New York Times


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