Announcing Burnaway’s New Editors-at-Large, Expansion into Caribbean

By February 15, 2024

Burnaway, a leading contemporary art and criticism magazine, is excited to announce three new transformational Editors at Large: Amarie Cemone Gipson, Robert Alan Grand, and Natalie Willis Whylly. These additions join Editor Courtney McClellan, New Orleans Editor-at-Large Kristina Kay Robinson, and Editorial Assistant Isabella Marie Garcia as the company deepens and expands its work to reflect a growing US and international audience.

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“These Editors at Large were selected for their vast and varied experience, visual art knowledge, and community care investment. I look forward to working and learning alongside them as we explore the specificity and power of place,” said newly appointed Editor Courtney McClellan.

Gipson will cover Houston’s ever-vibrant and growing arts ecosystem, Grand, the Carolinas deeply rooted rural and urban arts communities, and Whylly will mark the magazine’s expansion into the Caribbean—a region with many ties to the South, increasingly present in national and international contemporary art discourse.

In addition to their editorial responsibilities, each Editor at Large will produce a program specific to their area and mentor emerging art writers through the annual Art Writing Incubator (AWrI), which is dedicated to increasing the diversity of voices in criticism.

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“I’m beyond excited as we build this team of artists, writers, DJs, curators, educators, and visionary thinkers and voices rooted in their communities and carrying global perspectives,” notes Brandon Sheats, Executive Director. “As we continue our experiment disguised as an art magazine, our Editors at Large bring a new energy to the magazine and reinforce our irreverent, outside perspective on contemporary art and culture.”

Photograph courtesy of Amarie Gipson.

Amarie Gipson is a Houston-born art worker and creative entrepreneur. She has held curatorial positions at various art institutions including The Studio Museum in Harlem, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Independently, her writing has been published in Artforum, ArtNews, ESSENCE, and many others. She is also the former Arts & Culture editor of Houstonia Magazine, where she worked to bring much-needed attention to Houston’s art scene. With nearly a decade of experience in the realms of fine art, music, and media, Gipson built The Reading Room, a Black art reference library made from her personal collection of books on Black art and cultural production.

Photograph courtesy of Robert Alan Grand.

Robert Alan Grand (he/him) is a writer and photographer based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. His writings have appeared in Art in America, The Bitter Southerner, and Garden & Gun, among others, and his photographs of the rural South have appeared in numerous exhibitions and regional publications. Grand grew up in Greenville, SC, and holds a BFA from Watkins College of Art in Nashville, TN. He co-founded and co-directed Kimberly-Klark, an interdisciplinary project space in Queens, New York. Currently, Grand serves as the Director of Marketing at Sawtooth, a community art and craft school that has been in operation since 1945.

Photograph courtesy of Kristina Kay Robinson.

Kristina Kay Robinson is an artist and writer born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. Her writing in various genres has appeared in Art in America, Guernica, The Baffler, The Nation, The Massachusetts Review, and Elle among other outlets. Robinson is a 2019 recipient of the Rabkin Prize for Visual Arts Journalism. Currently she serves as the New Orleans editor at large for Burnaway magazine.

Photograph courtesy of Natalie Willis Whylly.

Natalie Willis Whylly (she/they) is a queer curator and cultural worker from Grand Bahama. After earning their BA (Hons) and MA in Fine Art at York St John University in the UK, Willis returned to The Bahamas. With six years of experience at the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas, they now work independently as a curator, art consultant, and writer. Willis’ career focus centers on sensitive representation of marginalized communities (including their own), decolonizing the art archive, and contributing to public understanding of Bahamian and Caribbean visual culture.

During their time at the museum, Willis worked on an archive of public scholarship to reshape perceptions of Caribbean visual culture locally and regionally. Achievements include: organizing the museum’s first exhibition with bilingual wall texts (in English and Haitian Kreyol); the first group show celebrating Black Women artists of The Bahamas; and co-creating the museum’s first inter-island traveling exhibition program to better serve the archipelago more holistically. 


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