Five University Art Museums Acquire Artwork from the Collection of Souls Grown Deep
Souls Grown Deep Foundation and Community Partnership announced today that the Blanton Museum of Art (The University of Texas at Austin), Hampton University Museum, Hood Museum of Art (Dartmouth College), Princeton University Art Museum, and RISD Museum have made acquisitions from its collection of artworks by Black artists from the Southern United States, including Mary Lee Bendolph, Sally Mae Pettway Mixon, Thornton Dial, Lonnie Holley, and Purvis Young. The Hampton, Hood, Princeton, and RISD museums will also partner with the Foundation to offer paid internships to BIPOC undergraduate students for the Spring 2022 semester, marking the fourth cohort of the Foundation’s Internship Grant Program.
Apollo Awards 2021: Acquisition of the Year Shortlist

Apollo Awards 2021: Acquisition of the Year Shortlist

Apollo’s annual celebration of achievements in the art world. The Acquisition of the Year Award commends the best museum acquisitions of the past 12 months.

If You Want to Support the Arts in America, Invest in the South. Here’s Why

If You Want to Support the Arts in America, Invest in the South. Here’s Why

According to the latest United States Census, the South is home to nearly 40 percent of all Americans, making it the most populous region in the country. It is also the least supported by arts funding. A recent study found that a person living in the South received only $4.21 in arts and culture funding from philanthropy, compared to the national average of $8.60 per person. If you’re reading this in New York or Boston, know that Northeasterners receive about $16.

Greg Lauren Celebrates American Identity by Honoring Small Community of Black Quiltmakers From Gee’s Bend, Alabama

Greg Lauren Celebrates American Identity by Honoring Small Community of Black Quiltmakers From Gee’s Bend, Alabama

Greg Lauren’s line has always been rooted in American identity, but for his latest collection he wanted to approach that theme with more specificity. “I started to have a lot of conversations about fashion, about the work, and creating a more equitable company,” said Lauren. “And I wanted to change the way I approach things. I wanted to take a look at the history and roots of things.” Lauren looked at the history of quilts. He’s worked with them before, but started to dig deeper and came across Gee’s Bend, a community of craftswomen in the rural area of Boykin, Alabama, who have a history of quilting that dates back to slavery.

Greg Lauren and Gee’s Bend Quilters Take Aim at Cultural Appropriation

Greg Lauren and Gee’s Bend Quilters Take Aim at Cultural Appropriation

Ralph Lauren may have built an apparel empire out of romantic interpretations of Americana, but his nephew Greg Lauren is giving credit to authentic American creators with a new collaboration with the quilters of Gee’s Bend. Debuting at Bergdorf Goodman today, the textiles for the pieces were created by 14 quilters from the rural Alabama community of Black artists who trace their history — and craft — back to the enslaved people of Pettway Plantation.

Saving the Artwork of the South: Deep Investment, and a Drone

Saving the Artwork of the South: Deep Investment, and a Drone

“I’m the conjurer of all my ancestors, 400 years of African people in America,” said Joe Minter, surveying the dense outdoor environment of artworks he has forged from refuse over the past 32 years across his half-acre yard, facing two of the largest African-American cemeteries in the south. Nodding to the tombstones, he added, “they have given me the privilege of being their spokesman.”

How the Quilts of Gee's Bend Became Seminal Works of Modern Art

How the Quilts of Gee's Bend Became Seminal Works of Modern Art

One of the potential hazards of loving art is the tendency to see it as something separate from everyday life—a thing apart, with no ability to function practically beyond what it stirs in us emotionally or intellectually. Sometimes that can be true, but often our most inspired works are the ones inspired by a practical need, like the patterned rugs of the Middle East and Central Asia. The African American quilts of Gee’s Bend, Alabama, fall into this category. Now hailed as pivotal works of modern art in museum exhibitions around the country, the quilts were inspired by the simple need to stay warm.

Souls Grown Deep: In pursuit of impact

Souls Grown Deep: In pursuit of impact

The art world is at times hermetic and self-referential. Museums, artist-endowed foundations, commercial galleries and art fairs can resemble a never-ending carousel of party-going collectors, curators and dealers. Behind the glamorous facade of the art world are newly urgent challenges. Decades-long resentments about the privileged classes dominating the creative sector have boiled over. And today there is no hiding the fact that the art market – the largest unregulated legal market in the global economy – is a preserve of wealth, speculative investment and vanity.

Museum adds group of exceptional works to renowned holdings

Museum adds group of exceptional works to renowned holdings

The Toledo Museum of Art added more than 30 outstanding and diverse works of art to its collection in June through purchase and gifts. Among the many highlights of the new acquisitions are photographer Imogen Cunningham’s pioneering botanical study “False Hellebore (Glacial Lily)” (1926), Lonnie Holley’s incisive assemblage “Cutting Up Old Film (Don’t Edit the Wrong Thing Out)” (circa 1984), meditative still lifes by the 17th-century French painter Louyse Moillon and an anonymous 19th-century Mexican artist, and “Head of Charlie Parker” (circa 1955), a remarkable sculpture – never before exhibited publicly – by Los Angeles artist Julie Macdonald.

Alabama Quilting Collective Using $250,000 Grant for New Museum Dedicated to a Forgotten Legacy

Alabama Quilting Collective Using $250,000 Grant for New Museum Dedicated to a Forgotten Legacy

Just a few miles away from the famous Gee's Bend Quilters in Boykin, Alabama, lies another Wilcox County community with a rich history of making magic with fabric and thread-though few know its story. The original Freedom Quilting Bee Collective ("The Bee") was established in the rural town of Alberta by Civil Rights activists Francis X Walter and Estelle Witherspoon in 1966. At a time when Black people were being evicted from their homes and losing their jobs for registering to vote, Walter, an Episcopal priest, saw the beautiful quilts hanging on clotheslines as a way for local women to make some much-needed money for their families.