The Ivory Art Tower Collapses

The Ivory Art Tower Collapses

By Cheryl McGinnis

  • The Museum of Modern Art reopens in the fall with more inclusive artwork

  • MoMA’s first solo-exhibit will be by prominent artist Betye Saar

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Get ready for the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) to close its doors this summer and with good reason! Alas, it will reopen in the fall with a brand new mindset, inclusiveness. They finally got the memo, woke, whatever you want to call it and all art lovers will benefit. The Ivory Tower of art museums is collapsing under its own weight and rebuilding to reflect a truer American story.

Photo: “Extreme Times Call for Extreme Heroines” 2017, Betye Saar

Why This Matters: With Gen Z on the heels of millennials, museums are forced to change the way they do business, otherwise they will not be in business. In short, the collections are a big bore, been-there-done-that kind of thing. Don’t want to go there, even if it’s free kind of bore. When the MoMA reopens in the fall, look for a reconfigured space, inclusivity, along with more African American artists and increased Native American Art. The museum’s first solo-exhibit will be by prominent artist Betye Saar.

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Millennials Shelling Out Big Racks for Fine Art Work

Millennials Shelling Out Big Racks for Fine Art Work

By Donitra Clemons

  • In the last two years millennials bought almost half of the artwork priced at $1M

  • Millennials purchase more socially conscious pieces of work by people of color

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Many millennials are foregoing starter homes and instead buying art. They are choosing to leave the cheap reprints in their college dorm rooms and invest in original pieces by fine artists. Catalyzed by higher incomes and the ubiquitousness of the internet, millennials are purchasing more art than the generations before them. In the last two years, 22-37 year old adults bought almost half of the artwork priced at $1 million or more, according to a new Art Market report by Art Basel and UBS.  

Why This Matters: The purchasing power of these young collectors helped to boost the “global art market to its second-highest level in a decade,” notes the report. A substantial amount of their purchases were sourced or purchased through social media, where black adults are the largest user group. Specifically, the Art Market report noted that 93% of millennials made purchases online, spending and average of $106,930.

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Working Towards the Sea Change, Now the Countdown Begins

Working Towards the Sea Change, Now the Countdown Begins

By Cheryl McGinnis

  • Emma Amos has gained a seat at the table with white mid-century artists

  • The Whitney Museum will mount a large scale exhibit for black artists

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From historically black art museums and galleries to one of the most important museums for American contemporary art, Emma Amos has arrived and gained a seat at the table with the important male, white mid-century artists. It’s a huge achievement for the artist, for the public, for the museum and for those of us who have continually mounted exhibits of once underrepresented artists whose voices will now be apart of the American Art History.

Why This Matters: It has always been my hope that her work would break out of these confines someday. I wanted a greater audience to benefit from work like Emma’s. That day has come because in May, the Whitney Museum will mount an exhibit that will forever change the context of Emma’s work and on a larger scale black artists in general. Spilling Over Color: Painting Color in the 1960’s is a large group exhibit that explores the use of color in that decade with artists Ellsworth Kelly, Frank Stella, Miriam Shapiro and others.

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Nigeria’s Bronze Artifacts Returning Home

Nigeria’s Bronze Artifacts Returning Home

By CultureBanx Team

  • 26 cultural artifacts are being returned from France

  • 90% of Africa’s cultural heritage is now believed to be in Europe

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Beautiful Benin Bronze art pieces, that once called modern day Nigeria home are finally being returned from France. There are 26 cultural artifacts which were removed from Africa during the colonial era undergoing restitution from France to the country.

Why This Matters: Around 90% of Africa’s cultural heritage is now believed to be in Europe, according to Reuters. The art in question is currently housed at the Musee du Quai Branly museum in Paris and they were seized in 1892 as the spoils of war.  

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Nigeria’s ‘Mona Lisa’ Returns Home

Nigeria’s ‘Mona Lisa’ Returns Home

By CultureBanx Team

  • Ben Enwonwu’s famed “Tutu” was loaned to the Art X Lagos fair

  • The painting sold for a record $1.57M, the highest-valued work of Nigerian modern art

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Nigeria’s best-known modern artist Ben Enwonwu’s famed “Tutu” painting is being shown in the country for the first time since it disappeared. Originally painted in 1974, it went missing the next year and finally re-surfaced in February in north London.

Why This Matters: “Tutu” was loaned to the Art X Lagos fair for a weekend showing by Access Bank earlier this month. Enwonwu is etched in Nigeria’s art history, but his work has not drawn the auction prices to match his stature. Part of the reason for this mismatch in pricing and stature could be Nigeria’s art market still finding its footing on the global stage.

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