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

Artist Christopher Myers. | Courtesy of the artist and James Cohan, New York


Brooklyn-based artist Christopher Myers is now represented by James Cohan Gallery. Myers’s multidisciplinary practice is rooted in storytelling. He works across mediums—from textiles and sculpture to performance and film— often working in collaboration with artist from around the world. In October, James Cohan is presenting new works by Myers at No. 9 Cork Street, a converted townhouse in Mayfair, London, that Frieze is introducing as a flexible exhibition space for visiting galleries. Myers’s first solo show with James Cohan in New York is planned for February 2022 at its Tribeca location.

Awards & Honors

Artist Dread Scott was named senior fellow for the 2021-22 academic year at the Lunder Institute for American Art at Colby College in Waterville, Maine. Scott, who is based in Brooklyn, N.Y., says he “makes revolutionary art to propel history forward.”

The Pollock-Krasner Foundation announced its 2020-21 grants, awarding $3.35 million among 137 individual artists—including Greg Bray, Lisa Corinne Davis, Shaun Leonardo, and Shervone Neckles—and nonprofit organizations. See Full List


From left, Nicole R. Fleetwood, 2021. | Photo by Sara Bennett, Courtesy NYU; and Curator, Author, and Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung. | Photo by Alexander Steffens, Courtesy, HKW


Curator, author, and professor Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung will be the next director of Haus der Kulturen der Welt, a national center for contemporary art in Berlin, funded by the German government. His appointment is effective Jan. 1, 2023.

Nicole R. Fleetwood is joining New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development as the inaugural James Weldon Johnson Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication. Her tenured appointment begins July 1. Fleetwood curated the exhibition and authored the accompanying book “Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration.” She was previously a professor of American studies and art history at Rutgers University.

Angelique Power has been named president and CEO of the Skillman Foundation in Detroit, effective Sept. 13. Power previously served as president of the Field Foundation in Chicago.

The New Art Dealers Alliance (NADA) announced 17 new members, including Medium Tings of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Kendra Jayne Patrick of Bern, Switzerland; and Ackerman Clarke of Chicago.

The Morgan Library & Museum in New York announced the election four new members to its board of trustees in May, including Eric L. Motley. Currently, executive vice president and the corporate secretary at the Aspen Institute, Motley joins the National Gallery of Art at deputy director in August.


JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT, “Sam F,” 1985 (oil on door, 80 × 36 inches /2 m 3.2 cm × 91.44 cm, depth: 1 1/2 inches / 3.81 cm). | © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York; Dallas Museum of Art, Gift of Samuel N. and Helga A. Feldman, 2019.31


“Sam F” (1985) by Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988) was gifted to the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) by Samuel (1938-2001) and Helga Feldman (1940-2021). The acquisition is the first work by Basquiat to enter the museum’s collection. DMA has held the title to the painting since 2019 and took physical possession of the work upon the death of Mrs. Feldman in March. The gift is particularly notable because few museums own Basquiats because they failed to acquire his work when he was active and in the years following his death. Now the artist’s work is priced beyond their means. In 1985, at the age of 24, Basquiat visited Dallas for an exhibition opening at the museum and stayed for several weeks at the home of contemporary art consultant Marcia May and her husband Alan. During that time, Basquiat visited frequently with the Feldmans who lived in the same apartment building as the Mays. He painted “Sam F,” a portrait of Mr. Feldman, directly on a door from the building. The Feldmans loaned “Sam F” to the DMA for “Dallas Collects Jean-Michel Basquiat” in 1993. Nearly three decades later, “Sam F” will go on view in the museum’s main concourse on July 4.


Through its Art Conservation Project, Bank of America announced 2021 funding for 23 preservation projects. Fisk University, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and the National Museums of Kenya are among the institutions receiving support for artwork conservation. See Full List


DERRICK ADAMS, “Heir to the Throne,” 2021 (Non-fungible token ERC-721; Token ID: 1; Animated artwork; MOV: 497.92 MB (522,111,620 bytes), 2145x2160px, HD, 00:11; Minted on June 25, 2021, ed. 1/1). | Owner: RockNation; Smart contract address: 0x00372812abcb11c2ea291aeb7f612d9e0524b013. Estimate Upon Request. Reserve Met. Current Bid $7,500 (at 3 pm EST 6/25/21). Sold for $138,600


Artist Derrick Adams and Jay-Z collaborated on “Heir to the Throne,” an NFT celebrating the 25th anniversary of Jay’s “Reasonable Doubt” album. The one-of-one work is being auctioned online by Sotheby’s with a portion of the proceeds benefitting The Shawn Carter Foundation. Bidding is open June 25-July 2.

More News

President Joe Biden plans invite President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama to the White House for an unveiling ceremony of their official White House portraits. The event will likely occur in the fall. No word on the artist(s) for the portraits. | NBC News

The Brooklyn Public Library’s Center for Brooklyn History (CBH) launched Brooklyn Resists, a public history initiative that chronicles Black-led activism in Kings County, from abolition to the Black Lives Matter movement. Inaugurated on Juneteenth in response to the police and race-motivated murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless others, the project features exhibitions and public programs that draw on CBH’s archives. | Hyperallergic

Employees of the Barbican Centre in London released “Barbican Stories,” a dossier detailing more than 100 first-hand and witnessed accounts that shed light on the “inherently racist” work culture at the largest performing arts center in Europe, which houses an art gallery, library, theaters, and cinemas. | Artnet News

The Association of African American Museums announced philanthropist Robert F. Smith will be the featured speaker at its virtual conference (Aug. 4-6). Smith is chairman and CEO of Vista Equity Partners. His keynote conversation with journalist Jacque Reid is titled “Why Black Museums Matter: Strengthening Our Institutions, Communities and Museums.”


Applications for YoungArts Awards are open through Oct. 15, 2021. The competition for budding visual, literary, and performing artists aged 15-18 (or in grades 10-12) is the first step to becoming a U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts. | More Info

Applications for fall internships at the Studio Museum in Harlem are now open through July 18, 2021. The paid internships are available to college undergraduates, graduate students, and recent graduates. | More Info


UPDATE (6/25/21): Basquiat acquisition report was corrected to reflect that the artist stayed with art consultant Marcia May during his visit to Dallas. He did not stay with the Feldmans who lived in the same apartment building. Basquiat painted “Sam F” on a door from the building.

UPDATE (7/2/21): Auction result added for Derrick Adams x Jay-Z NFT auction at Sotheby’s


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