Harlem keeps faith (but not Ringgold) in museum
Children’s art museum, designed by the architect David Adjaye, will be named after the Sugar Hill neighbourhood instead
By Javier Pes. From Art Basel Miami Beach daily edition
Published online: 03 December 2011
new york. Faith Ringgold, right, whose 1960s narrative paintings are on show in the Miami Art Museum’s exhibition “American People, Black Light” (until 1 January 2012), has inspired a children’s art museum being built in the heart of Harlem, New York. The Art Newspaper has learned that the museum, which is being designed by the architect David Adjaye, will not now be named after the Harlem-born, octogenarian, African-American artist, as originally planned.
The former Faith Ringgold Museum of Art and Storytelling, a 15,000 sq. ft visual and performing arts space, will instead be named after the historic Harlem neighbourhood Sugar Hill. Ellen Baxter, the executive director of Broadway Housing Communities, the not-for-profit organisation behind the $74m housing, cultural and eduction complex, says: “It’s part of the evolution of the museum. It was decided that it was not a good idea to name [the building] after one artist because it was not going to be a museum of her work.”
Children will grow up in the Adjaye-designed housing estate using the Sugar Hill museum “every day”, Baxter hopes. Sugar Hill was the home of the 1920s Harlem Renaissance, and key to the 1960s civil rights movement.
A spokeswoman for Ringgold confirmed that the artist’s name would not be on the building. A spokeswoman for David Adjaye Architects said that the museum’s programme is “yet to be defined”.
Adjaye is the 2011 Design Miami designer of the year. His Genesis pavilion can be found at the entrance to the fair’s tent in the Miami Beach Convention Center’s car park (until 4 December).
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