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

A month after Pamela Council’s first solo exhibition opens at Denny Dimin Gallery in September, the artist is installing a massive fountain in Times Square. Council is holding a model of the public art work. | Photo by Alex Webster for Times Square Arts


Denny Dimin Gallery in New York announced its representation of Pamela Council. “Fringe,” the gallery’s summer group show, featured Council. “Bury Me Loose,” the artist’s solo exhibition debut with the gallery, opens Sept. 10. A major public art installation by the artist launches Oct. 7, in New York’s Times Square. Encased in more than 365,000 acrylic nails, “A Fountain for Survivors” will be “flowing with a natural healing liquid.” Council lives and works between New York City and Newark, N.J.


First organized and presented at Brazil’s Museu de Arte de São Paulo (MASP) in 2018, “Afro-Atlantic Histories” opens for the first time in the United States at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston on Oct. 24. The expansive exhibition explores the history and legacy of the transatlantic slave trade through 130 works of art and documents spanning the 17th to 21st centuries. Artist from 24 countries across Africa, the Americas, and Europe are featured. After Houston, the show will travel to the National of Gallery Art in Washington D.C., the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and additional venues pending confirmation.

Amy Sherald‘s portrait of Breonna Taylor will be displayed at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) for the first time next month in the forthcoming exhibition “Reckoning: Protest, Defiance. Resilience.” The painting was jointly acquired by NMAAHC and the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Ky., earlier this year.

Photographer Dawoud Bey will deliver virtually the Whitney Museum of American Art’s 2021 Walter Annenberg Lecture on Sept. 14. Bey’s “An American Project” exhibition is on view at the museum through Oct. 3. He will be joined in conversation by Whitney Director Adam D. Weinberg.


The Smithsonian is celebrating its 175th anniversary in 2021 with a variety of programs and events on the National Mall and at Nationals Park, where Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III threw the ceremonial first pitch on Aug. 15. The Nats played the Atlanta Braves and lost 6-5.


Dr. Melissa L. Gilliam was named executive vice president and provost of Ohio State University (OSU) in Columbus, effective Aug. 1. Gilliam is the first woman of color to serve as OSU’s chief academic officer. She previously served as vice provost and professor health justice, obstetrics, gynecology, and pediatrics at the University of Chicago. An educator, researcher, and pediatric-adolescent gynecologist, Gilliam is the daughter of artist Sam Gilliam and journalist Dorothy Gilliam.


HUGH HAYDEN, Preparatory drawing of Brier Patch in Madison Square Park, New York, 2021/2022. | © Hugh Hayden, Courtesy Lisson Gallery

Public Art

Madison Square Park in New York City commissioned a public art project from Dallas, Texas-born, New York-based artist Hugh Hayden. Exploring the tensions in the American education system, the installation will feature 100 wooden school desks interconnected by a tangle of tree branches. Following projects by Alison Saar, Martin Puryear, Leonardo Drew, and Abigail DeVille, Hayden’s “Brier Patch” opens Jan. 18, 2022.

Awards & Grants

The National Endowment for the Humanities announced a new round of grants, providing $28.4 million to fund 239 projects. | New York Times

BOOM Concepts, which supports the development of artists and creative entrepreneurs in Pittsburgh, Pa., announced artist and educator Jayla Patton is working with its BOOM Universe Program, and will be in residence from August through September.


More News

Kehinde Wiley created a new art card for American Express Centurion, which debuts in November. Wiley’s design for the premium black card references the green leaf, botanical background in “Princess Victoire of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha” (2012). The painting is from The Economy of Grace, Wiley’s first-ever series focused on female subjects, and features a model the artist cast from the streets of New York. | Bloomberg


An open call has been issued for experienced curators interested in serving as artistic director of the 24th Sydney Biennale in 2024. Deadline for submissions is Sept. 27, 2021 by 5 pm AEST. | More Info


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