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National Puzzle Day: Piece Together Major Works by African American Artists, Including Mickalene Thomas, Charles White,  Alma Thomas, and Archibald Motley

National Puzzle Day: Piece Together Major Works by African American Artists, Including Mickalene Thomas, Charles White, Alma Thomas, and Archibald Motley

  STAYING CLOSE TO HOME over the past year, due to COVID-19, has breathed new life into a traditional past time. An entertaining way to pass the hours and relieve stress, jigsaw puzzles are more popular than ever. Several focus on signigicant works by important 20th century African American artists such as Charles White, Alma...
Akili Tommasino Headed to Metropolitan Museum of Art as Associate Curator

Akili Tommasino Headed to Metropolitan Museum of Art as Associate Curator

THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART in New York has hired Akili Tommasino as associate curator in the Modern and Contemporary Art department. A scholar of the 20th-century avant-grade, Tommasino is currently a curator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. He starts at The Met in April. The appointment was first reported by ARTnews on...
Landscape With Rainbow: Robert Duncanson Painting Was Part of Official Biden-Harris Inauguration Celebration at U.S. Capitol

Landscape With Rainbow: Robert Duncanson Painting Was Part of Official Biden-Harris Inauguration Celebration at U.S. Capitol

“Landscape With Rainbow” (1859) by Robert Duncanson   SPEAKING TO BRIGHTER HORIZONS, a painting by Robert Duncanson played a special role in the Presidential Inauguration activities yesterday. “Landscape With Rainbow” (1859) was displayed in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda, on loan for one day from the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM). Duncanson is the first Black...
Commissioned During the Carter Era, Jacob Lawrence's Presidential Inauguration Image Centers the American People

Commissioned During the Carter Era, Jacob Lawrence’s Presidential Inauguration Image Centers the American People

“The Swearing In” (1977) by Jacob Lawrence   DEPICTING THE WINTER CHILL of Inauguration Day, Jacob Lawrence (1917-2000) relied on a trio of visual cues—bare-branched trees; a two-toned blue sky; and a series of figures huddled in coats, hats, and scarves. Rich with narrative, an efficient composition, methodic use of color, and rigorous attention to...
Lawrence Jackson: Black Photographer Will Document Historic White House Tenure of Incoming Vice President Kamala Harris

Lawrence Jackson: Black Photographer Will Document Historic White House Tenure of Incoming Vice President Kamala Harris

Photographer Lawrence Jackson   THE TENURE OF THE FIRST WOMAN, first Black, and first Asian American to serve as Vice President of the United States will be visually documented by a Black photographer. Lawrence Jackson was named photographer to Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris on Jan. 15. The Biden-Harris transition announced a number of White House...
In His Final Public Speech in 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. Said, 'We've Got Some Difficult Days Ahead'

In His Final Public Speech in 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. Said, ‘We’ve Got Some Difficult Days Ahead’

  AT THE CONCLUSION OF HIS FAMOUS “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech, Martin Luther King Jr., said “We’ve got some difficult days ahead.” He made the speech on April 3, 1968, to a crowd of striking sanitation workers at Bishop Charles Mason Temple in Memphis, Tenn. He had flown into town from Atlanta under...
An American in Paris: Herbert Gentry Said His Paintings Possess a 'Certain Spontaneity' and Reflect 'People I've Met Throughout the World'

An American in Paris: Herbert Gentry Said His Paintings Possess a ‘Certain Spontaneity’ and Reflect ‘People I’ve Met Throughout the World’

  MANY BLACK AMERICAN ARTISTS, seeking a more racially receptive experience, thrived in Europe during the post-war years. A New Yorker, Herbert Gentry (1919-2003) was at the center of the milieu. In 1949, he established Chez Honey, a gallery-club in the Montparnasse area of Paris, a popular gathering place that engendered many of his friendships...
Guggenheim Announces Major Appointment, Naming Naomi Beckwith Deputy Director and Chief Curator

Guggenheim Announces Major Appointment, Naming Naomi Beckwith Deputy Director and Chief Curator

THE SOLOMON R. GUGGENHEIM MUSEUM in New York has hired Naomi Beckwith to serve as deputy director and Jennifer and David Stockman Chief Curator. The announcement was made today by the museum’s director Richard Armstrong. It’s a major appointment that comes against the backdrop of select museums nationwide facing accusations of racism from their employees...
Iconic Lorna Simpson Portrait of Rihanna Covers January/February Essence Magazine

Iconic Lorna Simpson Portrait of Rihanna Covers January/February Essence Magazine

  FOR YEARS, Lorna Simpson has been recognized for her powerful and transporting collage portraits of Black women. Her subjects are usually anonymous. Her latest is one of the most recognizable women in the world—music, beauty, and fashion icon Rihanna. Essence magazine commissioned Brooklyn-based Simpson to make a series of portraits of Rihanna for its...
National Gallery of Art Makes 4 New Hires, Including First Curator of African American and Afro-Diasporic Art

National Gallery of Art Makes 4 New Hires, Including First Curator of African American and Afro-Diasporic Art

THE NATIONAL GALLERY OF ART (NGA) announced four new appointments today, including hires for three newly created positions. Kanitra Fletcher is the Washington, D.C., museum’s first-ever associate curator of African American and Afro-Diasporic art. Chief Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging Officer Mikka Gee Conway and Eric Bruce, head of visitor experience and evaluation, are also inaugurating...
Brenna Youngblood is Now Represented by Roberts Projects in Los Angeles

Brenna Youngblood is Now Represented by Roberts Projects in Los Angeles

  AFTER FEATURING TWO WORKS by Brenna Youngblood at Art Basel OVR: Miami Beach, the digital art fair held in December, Roberts Projects in Los Angeles announced its representation of the multidisciplinary artist yesterday. Youngblood expresses herself through abstraction and often integrates found objects and materials into her work, many with personal significance. Trained as...
Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco Hire Curator of African Art, Natasha Becker is First to Serve in Newly Created Position

Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco Hire Curator of African Art, Natasha Becker is First to Serve in Newly Created Position

THE FINE ARTS MUSEUMS of San Francisco (the de Young and Legion of Honor) expanded their curatorial team at the end of the year, hiring an inaugural curator of African art. Natasha Becker officially started at the Museums in the newly created role on Dec. 1. Working in the department of the arts of Africa,...
Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2020, Key News, Exhibitions, Awards, and More That Defined Year

Culture Type: The Year in Black Art 2020, Key News, Exhibitions, Awards, and More That Defined Year

  Noah Davis at David Zwirner Gallery, NY   BLACK ARTISTS WON NUMEROUS AWARDS, joined major art galleries, and published lavishly illustrated books about their work in 2020. Early in the year, Christine Turner’s documentary “Betye Saar: Taking Care of Business” screened at Sundance, an expansive survey of Los Angeles painter Noah Davis opened at...
Culture Type Picks: 15 Best Black Art Books of 2020

Culture Type Picks: 15 Best Black Art Books of 2020

  WITH MUSEUMS CLOSED and galleries shuttered for months on end in 2020, a succession of new art books focused on Black artists provided much needed solace, insights, and deep dives into the practices of up-and-coming artists and historic figures. When exhibitions dedicated to Kamoinge Workshop, Tyler Mitchell, Jordan Casteel, and Yvette Yiadom-Boakye were temporarily...
Coming Soon: 'Icons of Nature and History,' a Major Survey of David Driskell Opens at High Museum in Atlanta in February 2021

Coming Soon: ‘Icons of Nature and History,’ a Major Survey of David Driskell Opens at High Museum in Atlanta in February 2021

  A MAJOR TRAVELING SURVEY of David Driskell (1931-2020) opens at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta in February 2021. “David Driskell: Icons of Nature and History” will present an overview of Driskell’s illustrious career and celebrate highlights of his oeuvre, across painting, printmaking and collage. About 60 paintings and works on paper will...
Titus Kaphar Explored Renaissance Christian Imagery and Presented a Black Jesus Painting in a Deconsecrated Church in Brussels

Titus Kaphar Explored Renaissance Christian Imagery and Presented a Black Jesus Painting in a Deconsecrated Church in Brussels

Gesù Church in Brussels   A DECONSECRATED CHURCH in Brussels, Belgium, served as the venue for a recent exhibition of religious paintings by Titus Kaphar. “The Evidence of Things Unseen” was presented by Maruani Mercier gallery at Gesù Church. Kaphar’s practice is a sustained interrogation of Western art. He challenges historic narratives and questions what...