July 21, 2021

By July 21, 2021
Zipporah Camille Thompson, 2021/2022 MOCA GA Working Artist Project Fellow, shown at her loom in her Atlanta studio. Photo by Patrick Heagney. Image courtesy the artist.
Seeds, a juried show. applications open through August 5 at Westobou Gallery, Augusta

MOCA GA announces the 2021/2022 Working Artist Project Winners

ATLANTA—The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia (MOCA GA) has announced the winners of the 2021/2022 MOCA GA Working Artist Project: Kevin Cole, Zipporah Camille Thomspon, and Jeremy Bolen.

Jordan Carter, Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Art Institute of Chicago and the 2021/2022 WAP Project Curator commended the three fellows, reflecting, “Each of these three artists powerfully presented the depth of their conceptual, social, and political concerns, and demonstrated the rigor of their material engagements. Together they represent diverse media and disciplines, both spanning and integrating painting and sculpture; ceramics and textile; installation and performance; as well as art, science, and environmental and social justice.

Kandis Williams wins Hammer Museum’s $100,000 Mohn Award

LOS ANGELES—Los Angeles’s Hammer Museum has announced multidisciplinary artist, author, and curator Kandis Williams as the winner of the 2020 Mohn Award. Williams, a cofounder of Cassandra Press and a visiting faculty member at CalArts, will receive $100,000, and the Hammer Museum will produce a monograph of her work, which encompasses collage, performance, and assemblage, among other mediums. “Kandis Williams challenges the status quo with not only her art practice but also in her writing and publishing work. The Mohn Award celebrates the clarity and strength of her polymath voice,” said Hammer Museum director Ann Philbin in a statement.

Telfair Museums hires new chief curator from Smithsonian

SAVANNAH—Crawford Alexander Mann III will join Telfair as the museum’s next chief curator in November 2021. Mann is coming from the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., where he has been curator of prints and drawings since 2017. At the Smithsonian, Mann has organized world-class exhibitions including the major upcoming survey Sargent, Whistler, and Venetian Glass: American Artists and the Magic of Murano. Before the Smithsonian, he served as the Joan and Macon Brock Curator of American Art at the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk, Virginia, and as the Andrew W. Mellon Fellow at the Rhode Island School of Design Museum in Providence, Rhode Island.

Seeds, a juried show. applications open through August 5 at Westobou Gallery, Augusta

Ford and Mellon foundations team up for $5 M. initiative focused on U.S. Latinx artists

NEW YORK—Traditionally, the Ford Foundation and Mellon Foundation have not given grants directly to artists, but the pandemic may change that. Together with the U.S. Latinx Art Forum (USLAF), two of the country’s largest philanthropic organizations have created the Latinx Artist Fellowship. Over the next five years, the foundations will put $5 million toward the fellowship program, with $3.75 million going to seventy-five artists in the form of $50,000 unrestricted grants and the remainder going to USLAF.

The inaugural cohort of fifteen artists hails from across the country and represents a mix of artists from different career stages (five are emerging, five are mid-career, and five are established). Though the Latinx Artist Fellowship isn’t specifically COVID-related, it is part of an effort “to get money into the hands of artists, especially these generally under-resourced and highly overlooked artists that are commensurate with 20 percent of a population demographic,” according to Deborah Cullen-Morales, a program officer at the Mellon Foundation.

High Museum of Art touring exhibition to explore the rise of self-taught artists in America 

ATLANTA—Gatecrashers: The Rise of the Self-Taught Artist in America, will debut at the High Museum of Art on August 20 and is set to tour nationally. The show highlights more than a dozen early-twentieth-century painters who “fundamentally reshaped who could be an artist in the United States.”

Following its debut at the High, the exhibition will travel to the Brandywine River Museum of Art (May 28–Sept. 5, 2022) and The Westmoreland Museum of American Art (Oct. 30, 2022–Feb. 5, 2023). 

The exhibition is curated by the High’s Merrie and Dan Boone Curator of Folk and Self-Taught Art, Katherine “Katie” Jentleson, and is based on the book she authored of the same name. “Gatecrashers — both the book and the exhibition — establishes an origin story for how self-taught artists first succeeded within the mainstream art world,” said Jentleson. “John Kane, Anna Mary Robertson ‘Grandma’ Moses, Horace Pippin and the other artists in the exhibition deserve to be reconsidered not only because of how their work intertwined with major cultural and social change of their day, but also because of how their gatecrashing set the stage for the vital role that self-taught artists still play in the 21st century, greatly diversifying our cultural canons across race, gender, class, ability and other important markers of identity that are all too often underrepresented.” 

Smithsonian acquires Nancy Holt archives

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Smithsonian Institution’s Archives for American Art is to receive more than 50,000 documents related to Land artist Nancy Holt. In acquiring the collection—which includes Holt’s dream journals as well as photographs, transcripts of interviews, and financial documents—the Smithsonian hopes to embolden and expand research on the role of women in the Land art movement, which has typically been perceived as dominated by men. “The depth of historical material solidifies Holt’s position as a pioneer of the movement,” asserts Jacob Proctor, the Smithsonian’s Gilbert and Ann Kinney New York Collector in charge of new acquisitions. Proctor notes that the trove reveals “the complex research and organizational labor involved in realizing her works, while her writings, interviews, and correspondences demonstrate how Land art was as much a discursive and media practice as a sculptural one.”

Sacklers temporarily banned from slapping name on art institutions

NEW YORK—Ever since the opioid manufacturer Purdue Pharma LP, owned by members of the Sackler family, pled guilty for criminal charges related to the handling of its addictive prescription painkiller OxyContin in November 2020, a growing number of institutions have rebranded and cut ties with the Sackler name. Purdue announced the company’s bankruptcy reorganization plan in September 2019, which was initially met with strong resistance by 15 states. A recent development announced in early July indicates that the 15 states have agreed to abandon this resistance if Purdue released “millions of documents” from “decades of business operations.” According to Hyperallergic, the Sacklers will also be required to pay an additional $50 million from their personal wealth, an estimated $11 billion.

The Sacklers will be required to pay $4.5 billion over nine years. Under the latest deal, the Sacklers will be prohibited from naming institutions, including museums and hospitals, until these payments have been completed.

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