CURATORED NOTES: The Ending of 2021

In the Midst of a Beautiful Chaos, Life is Still Good

Strange Fruit. Date: 1960. Collection: Works Progress Administration (WPA) Art. | Artist, Valerie Maynard | Public Domain

As a child, my mother took me to museums on a regular basis. I grew up to discover that one space that she was unaware of… or should I say she was not given privy to visit because no museum attendants had the audacity to inform her that they existed. Fast-forward some years later, I would have the opportunity to work in an art library housed inside a white museum. Right around the corner, a Black Museum that I frequented did not have an art library. I began researching and discovering that this is common in Black galleries, libraries, archives, and museums. Since then, I have been on a mission to fill this gap missing in ethnic artistic institutions. ART | library deco aims to inspire you to engage in Blackness – the valor and the audacity to be beautiful on a canvas without apology is radical!

Throughout this pandemic, I have had to revert to my childhood memories of what was introduced to me and what I now understand is my birthright: ART in its varied forms. It is continuously saving me from depression and negativity, with more uncertainty headed our way. I deem this era of my life: The Beautiful Chaos. I mean what else do you call it? Albeit I can find the positives, humor, and zest in life despite the challenges living through a global pandemic because it is my intention to.

Uniquely, these past two years has elevated ART | library deco to another level of growth regardless of life’s challenges. What I know for sure, despite calamity art will save the world and document the signs of the times by African American artists who are social advocates for change. Thank you for reading our art content, utilizing the repository, attending our online events, and investing in the virtual art library. I appreciate your words of encouragement, comments, and suggestions. There are grand expectations set forth for the expansion of the virtual art library and we hope that you will continue with us on this journey.

On a closing note, I am grateful that my mother had the artistic genius to dare walk into museums with three Black children without apology. And, what she was not made aware of – I had the opportunity to find and found in my own right.

Read my 2021 Scholarship Now in the History Books: Perspective: In the Time of COVID-19 | Still Black See


kYmberly Keeton

Chief Library Curator @ ART | library deco

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