Latest News in Black Art: Tunji Adeniyi-Jones Now Repped by White Cube, Marcus Jahmal Joins Anton Kern Gallery, Seattle Artist Denzil Hurley Has Died & More


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


From left, Tunji Adeniyi-Jones. | Photo by William Jess Laird; TUNJI ADENIYI-JONES, “Bird Charmer II,” 2016 (oil on canvas, 78 × 52 inches / 198.1 × 132.1 cm). | © Tunji Adeniyi-Jones




Tunji Adeniyi-Jones has joined White Cube gallery. His work is inspired by ancient West African history and mythology and his Yoruba heritage. Born and educated in the UK, the artist is based in Brooklyn, N.Y. A painting by Adeniyi-Jones covers the exhibition catalog “Young, Gifted and Black: The Lumpkin-Boccuzzi Family Collection of Contemporary Art.” Opening Sept. 16, “Tunji Adeniyi-Jones: Astral Reflections,” his first UK solo show will be on view at Charleston in East Sussex. Subsequently, his first exhibition with White Cube opens Nov. 19 in the Bermondsey district of London.

New York gallery Anton Kern Gallery announced its representation of Marcus Jahmal. The artist was born in New York, where he still lives and works. Jahmal’s first solo exhibition with the gallery is scheduled for December.⁠

Yashua Klos is now represented by Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery of Luxembourg. His first solo museum exhibition opens Feb. 12, 2022 at the Wellin Museum of Art at Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y. Klos’s first solo exhibition with the gallery is also slated for 2022. The Chicago-born artist lives and works in Brooklyn, N.Y.


Artist Yashua Klos. | Courtesy Zidoun-Bossuyt Gallery



Barbados-born, Seattle, Wash.-based artist and educator Denzil Hurley (1949-2021) died June 22. He was 72. Hurley was a professor emeritus in the School of Art + Art History + Design at the University of Washington, where he taught from 1994 to 2017. In 2019, his work was featured in the group exhibition, “Doing What Comes Naturally: Seven Painters in Their Prime,” which was curated by Robert Storr at the Milton Resnick and Pat Passlof Foundation in New York. | Artforum

Graphic designer Reynold Ruffins (1930-3021) died on July 11, at his home in Sag Harbor, N.Y. He was 90. Ruffins was an early member of Push Pin Studios, the design firm co-founded by Milton Glaser, and later co-founded his own design studio, Ruffins/Taback. Ruffins recalled “being Black made him a rarity in the advertising business—an industry that, before the Civil Rights era, was an all-white world of Mad Men. Since his work was his calling card, clients often did not know his race.” | New York Times



The Baltimore Museum of Art announced five new board members, including Lori N. Johnson, associate professor of art history at Morgan State University in Baltimore, and actor Michael Ealy. | Artforum

The Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland, revamped its board, naming three new co-presidents, Joanne Cohen, Stephen G. Sokany, and Audra T. Jones, founder and CEO of Krystal Klear Communications. The appointments were effective July 29. Under the new structure, Jones is the first Black person to serve in a presidential role at the museum. In addition, F. Allen Boseman Jr., is among six new members added to the board. |

The National Academy of Design announced new appointments, including Adrienne Elise Tarver who was named director of programs, and Thomas E. Moore III, who will serve as director of development.

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, a major supporter of the arts and journalism, named Heidi Barker vice president/communications and chief diversity, equity, and inclusion officer.


WANGECHI MUTU, “The Seated II,” 2019 (bronze, 80 ¾ x 37 ¼ x 31 2/4 inches / 205.1 x 94.6 x 80.6 cm). | © Wangechi Mutu, Courtesy of the artist and Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels



The Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio announced the acquisition of “Seated II” (2019) by Wangechi Mutu. Standing 6.5 feet tall, the bronze sculpture is part of a series of four works originally commissioned by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York for its inaugural facade commission in 2019. In the coming year, “Seated II” will be installed in the sculpture garden on the 40-acre campus of the Toledo museum.


Awards & Grants

Serpentine Galleries in London announced 2021 recipients of its new Support Structures for Support Structures fellowship program: Barby Asante, Beverly Bennett, Jacob V Joyce, Abbas Zahedi, the project Other Cinemas, and the collectives Blak Outside, Ferarts Collective, Nawi Collective, Skin Deep, and RESOLVE Collective.



Curator Destinee Ross-Sutton is partnering with Christie’s on the second edition of Say It Loud: Visionaries of Self. Directly benefitting the participating artists, the online auction is open through Aug. 19, 2021.

Billed as the first-of-its-kind, Sotheby’s auction house is hosting Brilliant and Black: A Jewelry Renaissance, a selling exhibition featuring works by Black jewelry designers. The presentation is curated in partnership with Melanie Grant, author of “Coveted: Art and Innovation in High Jewelry.” Priced from $1,500 to $1 million, 60 pieces by 21 artists are being offered. The jewelry will be exhibited at Sotheby’s galleries in New York (Sept. 17-26, 2021) and available for immediate purchase online (Sept. 17-Oct. 10, 2021).



The following employment opportunities are based in Washington, D.C.:

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History & Culture is hiring an administrative officer for its Office of Strategic Partnerships. Position closes Aug. 9, 2021. | More Info

The Archives of American Art is seeking a museum specialist, a position focused on the Smithsonian institution’s collecting initiatives. Position closes Aug. 12, 2021. | More Info

At the National Gallery of Art, a search is underway for a program analyst/customer experience strategist. The candidate will work with head of visitor experience and evaluation. Position closes Aug. 13, 2021. | More Info

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art is recruiting an associate director of advancement and communication. Submission deadline Aug. 17, 2021. | More Info here and here


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