DURHAM—Trevor Schoonmaker, deputy director of curatorial affairs and Patsy R. and Raymond D. Nasher Curator of Contemporary Art at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, has been named the museum’s new director, Duke University Provost Sally Kornbluth announced. Schoonmaker was the founding curator of the museum when it opened in 2005 and late served as artistic director of the fourth edition the New Orleans triennial Prospect in 2017. At the Nasher, Schoonmaker has curated nationally traveling exhibitions including Barkley L. Hendricks: Birth of Cool (2008) and Southern Accent: Seeking the American South in Contemporary Art (curated with Miranda Lash of the Speed Art Museum, 2016).
In a statement, Schoonmaker said, “I’m very excited to have this opportunity to lead the Nasher Museum into the future. Our foundation is quite strong, thanks to the bold vision of our previous directors, Kim Rorschach and Sarah Schroth, and our talented and dedicated museum staff. It is wonderful to be part of this innovative university that supports new ideas and scholarship towards the goals of greater diversity and inclusion. I welcome the challenge to take the Nasher Museum through this moment and to ascend to even greater heights. Together we will find new ways to enliven and inspire community through art.”
ATLANTA—Curator, scholar, artist, and former NFL defensive lineman Pellom McDaniels III died suddenly this week in Atlanta. Following a successful career as a professional football player for the Kansas City Chiefs and Atlanta Falcons, McDaniels earned his master of arts and PhD in American Studies from Emory University, where he later returned to serve as the curator of the African American collection at Emory’s Rose Library, a position he held until his death on April 19. As a curator, he was passionate about opening up the archive to new audiences, bringing items from the archives into Atlanta schools.
At Emory’s Rose Library, one of the major exhibitions Daniels curated was Still Raising Hell: The Art, Activism, and Archives of Camille Billops and James V. Hatch, which opened in Emory’s Woodruff Library in September 2016 and featured materials from the Billops-Hatch Archive at Rose, which is known as one of the premier collections of African American history in visual and performing arts. Daniels was also a noted scholar on the life and work of Georgia-born artist Benny Andrews, whose archives are also housed at the Rose Library. At the time of his death, McDaniels was at work on a project exploring the connection between Andrews and the Southern writer Flannery O’Connor.
McDaniels was laid to rest at the historic Westview Cemetery in Atlanta on Wednesday, April 22, 2020, in a private graveside service for his family. The Hammonds House Museum in Atlanta will host a virtual remembrance of McDaniels on Sunday, April 26 at 4 pm. (Find more information here.) McDaniels is survived by his wife Navvab McDaniels and two beloved children, Ellington “Duke” McDaniels and Sofia McDaniels.
ATLANTA—The Forward Arts Foundation has named Dana Haugaard as the winner of the 2021 Edge Award. The award includes a $10,000 cash prize, a two-week residency at the Hambidge Center, and a solo exhibition at the Swan Coach House Gallery in April 2021. The Edge Award finalists, who will receive $2,000 each and exhibit one work in the front gallery space during the Edge Award exhibit, are Davion Alston, Fredrik Brauer, Eleanor Neal and Saige Rowe.
NEW YORK—Artist Relief—the newly formed coalition of national arts funders including Artadia, Creative Capital, and the Foundation for Contemporary Art, among other funders—and Americans for the Arts have released deeply troubling reports from artists across the country. According to information gathered through a survey supervised by the two groups, 62% of artists are unemployed and 95% of respondents have experienced income loss because of COVID-19. 66% of respondents said that they are unable to access supplies, resources, spaces, or people necessary for their work, and 80% said that they do not yet have a plan to recover from these losses. Overall, artists have reported an average loss in total annual income of $27,103.
If you or someone you know is an artist affected by this pandemic, please explore our list of COVID-19 resources. Applications are open through May 21 for the second round of individual grants from Artist Relief.
NEW YORK—New Art Dealers Alliance (NADA) has announced a new grant for galleries, alternative art spaces, and nonprofits spaces that are facing economic hardship as a result of COVID-19. The NADA Gallery Relief Fund offers grants to support commercial art galleries, non-profits, and alternative spaces working with contemporary art that are deeply impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Art galleries—open to the public year-round—are small businesses, employers and platforms for artists, curators, and art workers around this country and internationally.
Applications for the grant are due May 8.
Artist Tina Girouard died at her home in Cecilia, Louisiana, this week. A fixture of the SoHo scene in the late 1960s and early 1970s, she was a founding participant in spaces such 112 Greene Street, the performance art piece/restaurant FOOD, Clocktower Gallery, PS1, Creative Time, and the Fabric Workshop among others. She returned to her native Louisiana in 1979 and later operated a studio in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Read more about her life and work in this brief profile by curator Daniel Fuller.