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

Scholar and Curator Vivian Crockett. | Photo by Ciara Elle Bryant


The New Museum in New York City announced the appointment of Vivian Crockett as curator. A Brazilian American scholar and curator, Crockett specializes in Latinx art and art of the African diaspora. Currently, she is the Nancy and Tim Hanley Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art at the Dallas Museum of Art. Previously, she was a Joan Tisch Teaching Fellow at the Whitney Museum of American Art (2018-20), Andrew W. Mellon Fellow in the department of Media and Performance Art at The Museum of Modern Art (2017-18), and research lead for the collection review process in the Painting and Sculpture department at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (2008-11). A graduate of Stanford University, Crockett is a Ph.D., candidate in art history at Columbia University, where her dissertation focuses on Brazilian artists Hélio Oiticica and Lygia Pape. She starts at the New Museum on Jan. 1, 2022.

The Rhode Island School of Design’s board of trustees elected five new members, including Ashleigh Axios and Michelle Ebanks. A RISD alum, Axios is chief experience officer and an owner of Coforma, a digital consultancy and design firm. She also serves as chair of the board for the AIGA, the professional association for design. Previously, Axios served as the creative director and a digital strategist in the Obama White House. Ebanks was CEO and president of Essence Communications for nearly two decades and currently serves as an independent board director for Essence Communications and Atlantic Media. The new members will serve three-year terms through May 2024.


The “About Love” campaign marks the first time The Carters have appeared in an advertisement together and also the first time the Tiffany Diamond has been featured in an ad. The 128.54-carat necklace is worn by Beyonce, who is only the fourth person to ever wear it. | © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat, Courtesy Tiffany & Co.


Beyoncé and Jay-Z collaborated with Tiffany & Company on a one-year advertising campaign that stars a Jean-Michel Basquiat painting that has been held in private collections and largely unseen publicly until now. The creative pairing draws on the couple’s affinity for Basquiat, who is represented in their art collection. “Equals Pi” (1982), a 72-inch-square acrylic and oil stick painting, features a background in a hue similar to the jewelry’s signature robin’s egg blue. The work sold for $250,000 plus fees, just above the estimate ($166,666-$233,333) at Sotheby’s London on Dec. 5, 1996. Twenty-five years later, Tiffany has purchased the painting from a private collector for the ad campaign with plans to display the work at its flagship store on Fifth Avenue in New York, when renovations at the location are complete. | ARTnews


Awards & Honors

Architect, scholar, and author Mabel O. Wilson is the recipient of the 2021 Vincent Scully Prize from the National Building Museum. The annual prize “recognizes excellence in practice, scholarship, or criticism in architecture, historic preservation, and urban design.” Wilson, the Nancy and George E. Rupp Professor of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University, will be presented with the award on Oct. 19 at the Washington, D.C., museum. | Photo: Mabel O. Wilson. | © Dario Calmese

Public Art & Events

With support from Bank of America, the Smithsonian is launching a two-year initiative called “Our Shared Future: Reckoning With Our Racial Past.” Framed as a dialogue on race, the programming is designed to provide “a safe and collaborative place where anyone can share experiences and increase their understanding of the legacy of race and racism.” The first event is a free forum on healthcare and wealth disparities that will be live streamed on Aug. 26 (from the program’s homepage). “We can’t solve the problems of race in America ourselves,” said Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III. “But we can give the public the tools to stimulate those conversations to help people understand race beyond Black and white.” | New York Times

Detroit Month of Design is Sept. 1-30. The 2021 festival features exhibitions, installations, design experiences, workshops, tours, and talks. The activities are indoors, outside, and virtual. Laura Hughes, Garnett Archer, and Piper Carter are members of the curatorial committee and branding for the event includes a font created by Tré Seals of Vocal Type.


BISA BUTLER, “Broom Jumpers,” 2019 (cotton, silk, wool and velvet, 87 x 52 1/4 inches / 221 cm x 132.7 cm), Collection of Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. | American Craft, Fall 2021


“Broom Jumpers” (2019), a quilted double portrait by Bisa Butler, graces the cover of the fall 2021 issue of American Craft magazine. Inside the issue, Emily Freidenrich interviews the New Jersey-based artist about her practice, methods, and inspirations.


The University of Chicago‘s Department of Visual Art seeks to hire an artist to join the faculty as a professor of painting. “The successful candidate will be appointed as an Assistant Professor on the tenure track.” Deadline to apply is Oct. 15, 2021. | More Info


Do you enjoy and value Culture Type? Please consider supporting its ongoing production by making a donation. Culture Type is an independent editorial project that requires countless hours and expense to research, report, write, and produce. To help sustain it, make a one-time donation or sign up for a recurring monthly contribution. It only takes a minute. Many Thanks for Your Support.