Diversity in Art or Artists?

The call for “diversity” in demographic representations of human talent in various fields is not new, but it now has become a searing issue everywhere, including museums.

Way back in 1969, the organization “Black Emergency Cultural Coalition” charged New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art for failing to include Black artists in an exhibition featuring scenes of Harlem (sort of made sense; there must have been some good Black artists to feature their hometown in their work).

But in 1971, the demands escalated when 15 Black artists backed out of the Whitney Museum’s exhibit “Contemporary Black Artists in America” because it wasn’t curated by any Black specialist.

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