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NEW YORK, NY, APRIL 24, 2017 — Thelma Golden, Director and Chief Curator of The Studio Museum in Harlem, today announced a new slate of inHarlem initiatives led by the exhibition Derrick Adams: Patrick Kelly, The Journey, presented at the Countee Cullen Library branch of the New York Public Library (NYPL) at 104 West 136th Street. This exhibition, on view from May 3 to October 20, is based on artist Derrick Adams’s extensive research into the archive of the influential African-American fashion designer Patrick Kelly (1954–1990), housed at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, NYPL. In conjunction with the exhibition, Adams will present a special public program on Wednesday, May 10, 2017, at 6:30 pm at the Schomburg Center, 515 Malcolm X Boulevard (at 135th Street). The event is free and open to the public. Ticket reservations can be made at nypl.org/events. Inaugurated in summer 2016, inHarlem is designed to explore innovative ways to work in the community while taking the Museum beyond its own walls. As the initiative moves into its second year, inHarlem is encompassing a growing range of dynamic exhibitions and programs in partnership with the NYPL, Schomburg Center, NYC Parks, Maysles Documentary Cinema, AFROPUNK, Harlem Stage, The Laundromat Project, New East Harlem Merchants Association, Marcus Garvey Park Alliance, Barnard College and other cultural institutions in Upper Manhattan and throughout the city. Thelma Golden said, “The success of our initial round of inHarlem initiatives has encouraged us to reach even more broadly into our community through a new set of collaborations with artists and neighborhood partners. We are thrilled to continue working with one of our lead partners, the New York Public Library, and to create and strengthen additional relationships.”
Building on the success of inHarlem’s installations of site-specific, commissioned sculptures in historic Harlem parks, Derrick Adams: Patrick Kelly, The Journey continues the Studio Museum’s commitment to exhibiting work by leading contemporary artists outside the traditional museum setting. Brooklyn-based artist Derrick Adams (born 1970) was the winner of the Studio Museum’s 2016 Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize. Since discovering Kelly and his work in the pages of a fashion magazine in the mid-1980s, Adams has found inspiration in the designer’s creativity and personal style. Patrick Kelly, The Journey takes its name from an unrealized Kelly biography proposed by Maya Angelou, who has described Kelly’s “tremendous blazing yet brief passage throughout the worlds he traversed.” At the center of Patrick Kelly, The Journey is Adams’s “Mood Board” series, a new body of work that responds to Kelly’s legacy as a formalist who imbued social context and humor into his creations. These abstract collages incorporate Kelly’s vintage clothing patterns, as well as his iconic fabrics, colors, and shapes: bold and colorful geometric forms, contours of the female body, and buttons and other embellishments. The works celebrate Kelly’s formal excellence while demonstrating Adams’s ongoing interest in deconstructing, fragmenting and manipulating structure and surface. Derrick Adams: Patrick Kelly, The Journey is organized by Hallie Ringle, Assistant Curator.
Site-Specific Commissioned Sculptures
The site-specific sculpture installations inHarlem: Kevin Beasley, Simone Leigh, Kori Newkirk, Rudy Shepherd remain on view through July 25, 2017, in four historic Harlem parks: Morningside, Marcus Garvey, St. Nicholas, and Jackie Robinson. In celebration of the new spring season, the works will be activated by a series of events and public programs, including a new engagement tool for families available at the Studio Museum and studiomuseum.org. On Sunday, May 21, at 3pm, inHarlem: Kevin Beasley will be the site for the closing concert for the 2017 Look + Listen Festival. Craig Harris and The Saints and Aint’s Brass Choir and Carman Moore’s Skymusic Ensemble will perform in Morningside Park, alongside Beasley’s specially commissioned sculpture Who’s Afraid to Listen to Red, Black and Green? Free tickets are available at lookandlisten.org/tickets.
For the past year, the Studio Museum and its local partners have presented a diverse range of public programs for all ages under the inHarlem umbrella. Last winter, the Museum partnered with Maysles Documentary Cinema to present a three-part, nonfiction film series addressing the on- and off-screen legacies of socially engaged cultural movements. Each featured a post-screening talkback with film directors, local artists and community organizers. The Museum, in partnership with Harlem Stage, also participated in the week-long AFROPUNK: The Takeover–Harlem, staging a panel entitled Bearing Witness as Protest that explored the complex roles artists and communities play in current and historical expressions of dissent.
Books, Authors, & Kids
Launched in June 2016, inHarlem: Books, Authors, & Kids is a series that offers children and parents opportunities to interact with their favorite writers and illustrators at the George Bruce Library at 518 West 125th Street. Multiple copies of each featured book are available for checkout. Upcoming events include:
April 22, 1 p.m.: Books, Authors, & Kids featuring Linda Trice and Kenya’s Art
June 28, 1 p.m.: Books, Authors, & Kids: Summer Reading Art Journals
September 9, 1 p.m.: Books, Authors, & Kids featuring Cheryl Willis Hudson and My Friend Maya Loves to Dance
Studio Salon is the Studio Museum’s literary series that invites visitors to participate in an ongoing series of talks, book clubs and writing workshops inspired by our exhibitions and aimed at encouraging self-expression and critical dialogue. This series offers a unique opportunity for language lovers from all backgrounds to come together and openly discuss the intersections of literature and contemporary art.
As part of inHarlem, Studio Salon teams up with NYPL for the Summer Reading Challenge 2017, which launches in June. The Museum will curate a special reading list in line with this year’s “Build a Better World” theme, delving into books that highlight the creation of conceptual and physical black spaces. The Museum will also host two sessions at the George Bruce Library this summer, with titles announced closer to the date. For more information, visit nypl.org/events/summer/reading-challenge.
The Harlem Semester
Now in progress, the second year of The Harlem Semester encourages Barnard College and Columbia University students to learn about Harlem’s history through immersion in the neighborhood under the mentorship of key cultural organizations. Organized through the Barnard Center for Research on Women, additional program partners include the National Black Theatre, Apollo Theater, Harlem Stage Gatehouse, the Schomburg Center, The Apollo Theater, The National Jazz Museum in Harlem, and The Romare Bearden Foundation. For more information, visit bcrw.barnard.edu/publications/harlemsemester.