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


The Morgan Library & Museum in New York appointed Jesse R. Erickson to the position of Astor Curator and Department Head, Printed Books and Bindings. He officially starts in January. At the University of Delaware, Erickson served previously as coordinator of Special Collections and Digital Humanities, assistant professor in the Department of English, and associate director of the Interdisciplinary Humanities Research Center. His research specialties include ethnobibliography, African American print culture, and the transnational publishing history of the Victorian period author Ouida. “Dr. Erickson is a rising star in the world of special collections curators and librarians, whose knowledge about, and enthusiasm for, the history of the printed word will create new opportunities around the Morgan’s distinguished collection,” Colin B. Bailey, director of the Morgan Library & Museum, said in a statement. | ArtDaily


IMAGE: Above left, Curator Jesse R. Erickson “is a rising star in the world of special collections, curators, and librarians. | © The Morgan Library & Museum, Photography by Janny Chiu, 2021


Aperture, the New York nonprofit established to advance photography, announced its first-ever publications endowment, made possible by a landmark $1 million matching grant from the Andrea Frank Foundation (AFF). AFF was founded in 1996 by photographer/filmmaker Robert Frank and the artist June Leaf in tribute to Frank’s daughter, Andrea. Recent Aperture publications include “Ming Smith,” “Paul Mpagi Sepuya,” “New Black Vanguard,” and “Kwame Brathwaite: Black Is Beautiful.” A new volume, “As We Rise: Photography from the Black Atlantic,” explores the Wedge Collection, owned by Toronto collector/curator Dr. Kenneth Montague.


Savannah, Ga.-based artist Suzanne Jackson is among the recipients of the 2021 Anonymous Was a Woman grant. Shown, SUZANNE JACKSON, “Rags-to-Wobble,” 2020 (acrylic, cotton paint cloth, vintage dress hangers, 86 x 63 with 14 inches variable bulge / 218.4 x 160 with 35.6 cm). | © Suzanne Jackson, Courtesy the artist and Ortuzar Projects. Photo by David Kaminsky

Awards & Honors

Anonymous Was a Woman, a $25,000 grant for women artists over the age of 45, announced 14 recipients for 2021. Ordinarily, 10 artists are selected for the annual award established by artist Susan Unterberg in 1996. (The sole funder of the grant, Unterberg remained anonymous until 2018, when she revealed her identity.) Beginning this year, additional support from two anonymous donors will enable four additional grants in 2021, 2022, and 2023. This year’s recipients include Nanette Carter, Oletha DeVane, Adama Delphine Fawundu, Coco Fusco, Renée Green, Judithe Hernández, Suzanne Jackson, Autumn Knight, and Adia Millett. | See Full List

Queer|Art announced its annual awards winners, including poet and artist Pamela Sneed, recipient of the inaugural Black|Queer|Art Mentorship Award for Artists and Organizers, and photographer Lola Flash, who is being recognized with the 2021 QueerArt|Prize for Sustained Achievement (both shown below). Four finalists for the 2021 Queer|Art|Prize for Recent Work were also named: Anaïs Duplan, Heesoo Kwon, Le’Andra LeSeur, and Moises Salazar. The winner of the Recent Work award will be announced Dec. 14 at the 2021 Queer|Art Annual Party at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. Each of the three award winners receive $10,000.


2021 Queer|Art Award Winners. From left, Poet and Artist Pamela Sneed | Photo by Eric McNatt; and Photographer Lola Flash. | Photo by Eduardo Rodriguez

More News

A massive fire at the National Museum of Gungu in the Democratic Republic of Congo destroyed 8,000 to 9,000 objects dating to the 18th century. The private museum houses one of the most important collections in the nation, with many items related to the Pende people in south western DRC. The cause of the fire is expected to be investigated. | ARTnews

London’s National Gallery of Art published a report detailing its ties to slavery. The research began in 2018 and covers 1824 to 1880. The findings cite 67 people directly and indirectly connected to the slave trade, including John Julius Angerstein, who sold 38 paintings to the British government to establish the museum’s collection. Angerstein was in the marine insurance business and made a fortune with what became Lloyd’s of London. According to the report: “An unknown proportion of this was in slave ships and vessels bringing to Britain produce cultivated in the Caribbean by enslaved people. Angerstein acted as a trustee of estates and enslaved people in Grenada and Antigua.” The report also named 27 people involved with the abolition movement and another 27 with links to both slavery and abolition. | Art Newspaper


The executive search firm Phillips Oppenheim is seeking applications for leadership positions at a number of arts institutions, including directors of major museums: the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum (New York, N.Y.); San Antonio Museum of Art (Texas); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (California); and the SculptureCenter (Long Island City, N.Y.). | More Info


The David C. Driskell Center for the Study of the Visual Arts and Culture of African Americans and the African Diaspora at the University of Maryland, College Park, was featured on the local NBC news. The coverage includes an interview with the center’s director, Curlee Holton. | Video by NBC4 Washington


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