NEW YORK, NY, October 9, 2018 —Thelma Golden, Director and Chief Curator of The Studio Museum in Harlem, today announced the inauguration of Find Art Here, a new initiative designed to bring the Museum’s permanent collection to schools, libraries, and service centers throughout Harlem. At a moment when the Museum has closed its galleries to prepare for construction of its new home, designed by Adjaye Associates in collaboration with Cooper Robertson, Find Art Here deepens the Museum’s engagement with its neighborhood, providing Harlem residents with access to key works from the collection.
In the first wave of the program, which began in late September 2018, partner institutions throughout Harlem have received a high-quality reproduction of artwork, chosen in collaboration with the partner site. Dating from 1954 through 2016, the works were made by a multigenerational roster of artists closely associated with The Studio Museum in Harlem throughout its history: Derrick Adams, Benny Andrews, Jordan Casteel, Elizabeth Catlett, LeRoy Clarke, Glenn Ligon, Mickalene Thomas, and Stephanie Weaver. The reproductions, paired with interpretative wall texts, are installed at P.S. 36 Margaret Douglas School; P.S. 79 Horan School; Thurgood Marshall Academy Lower School; AHRC Fisher Center; Countee Cullen Library; Park East High School; Harlem Library; and P.S. 154 Harriet Tubman Elementary School.
Thelma Golden said, “Find Art Here allows our neighbors to engage with great works of art from our permanent collection in their everyday environments. We have always been a point of contact between extraordinary artists of African descent and the Harlem communities that we’re proud to serve. Find Art Here renews and deepens our relationships in one of the best ways possible, by bringing our collection into the lives of our neighbors, right where they are.”
“Through our collaboration with the Studio Museum, students are able to engage directly with works of art and work directly with artists,” said Dawn Brooks DeCosta, Principal of Thurgood Marshall Academy Lower School. “Actually being able to stand in front of the work is so special and important—it creates lasting memories and experiences that will stay with them. Having the work in the school and seeing it every day connects them to the real world. It's community, art, and connection in learning spaces.”
In addition to providing partner institutions with reproductions of artworks, Find Art Here encompasses a variety of public programs and education initiatives, including collection-based curriculum materials anchored in art education and visual literacy. This includes interactive classroom sessions rooted in inquiry-based discussions and hands-on art making sessions. The Museum’s Education department will provide teacher workshops and downloadable lesson plans to connect the artwork to established classroom curricula. Additionally, Family Art Nights will bring parents and students together to celebrate and interact with the collection, as teaching artists directly engage with the participating schools and organizations. While each organization will explore and investigate the works in different ways, the Studio Museum’s goal is to ensure that the Harlem community is connected with the experience of living and interacting with art.
The inHarlem initiatives encompass a wide range of artistic and programmatic ventures, from site-specific artists’ projects to collaborative presentations with civic and cultural partners in Harlem. The initiatives began in August 2016 with specially commissioned sculptural works by Kevin Beasley, Simone Leigh, Kori Newkirk, and Rudy Shepherd, realized in Morningside Park, Marcus Garvey Park, St. Nicholas Park, and Jackie Robinson Park, respectively. Another, more recent inHarlem initiative was the exhibition Derrick Adams: Patrick Kelly, The Journey, organized in collaboration with the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and presented in the Countee Cullen Branch of the New York Public Library from May 2017 through February 2018. Firelei Báez: Joy Out of Fire is showing at the Schomburg Center through November 2018 and Maren Hassinger: Monuments is located in Marcus Garvey Park through June 2019.
About The Studio Museum in Harlem
Founded in 1968 by a diverse group of artists, community activists and philanthropists, The Studio Museum in Harlem is internationally known for its catalytic role in promoting the work of artists of African descent. As it celebrates its 50th anniversary, the Studio Museum is preparing to construct a new home at its longtime location on Manhattan’s West 125th Street, designed by internationally renowned architect David Adjaye of Adjaye Associates in collaboration with Cooper Robertson. The first building created expressly for the institution’s program, the new building will enable the Studio Museum to better serve a growing and diverse audience, provide additional educational opportunities for people of all ages, expand its program of world-renowned exhibitions, effectively display its singular collection and strengthen its trailblazing Artist-in-Residence program.
While the Studio Museum is currently closed in preparation for construction, the Museum has opened Studio Museum 127, a temporary programming space located at 429 West 127th Street, and is working to deepen its roots in the community through inHarlem, a dynamic set of collaborative programs in our neighborhood. The Museum’s groundbreaking exhibitions, thought-provoking conversations, and engaging art-making workshops continue at a variety of partner and satellite locations in Harlem.
Find Art Here is supported in part by Citi; the Stavros Niarchos Foundation; William R. Kenan Jr. Charitable Trust; Rockefeller Brothers Fund; The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation; Gray Foundation; May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation; Joseph and Joan Cullman Foundation for the Arts; and Con Edison.
Additional funding is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; the New York City Council Cultural After-School Adventures Program with support from Council Members Diana Ayala and Bill Perkins; the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.