We are grieving the tragic killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, and too many others. As these most recent instances of racially motivated violence continue against the background of the pandemic’s disproportionate toll on black, brown, and Indigenous communities, it remains all too apparent that lives are not valued equally throughout our society. We are angry. We are mourning. We know we all must play our part in changing it.
The Joan Mitchell Foundation has held equity as a defining value since its founding, but we are asking ourselves as we look forward, how can we do more as an organization serving artists? How do we ensure we structure and operate our programs as spaces that are welcoming and supportive to all? How do we remove barriers to participation in the visual arts? How can we do more to name and dismantle structural racism and the notion of white supremacy that we see around us?
We believe that transformation is possible.
The Joan Mitchell Foundation’s staff and board stand in solidarity with black, brown, and Indigenous people who are making their voices heard. And we believe in the transformative potential of the artistic voices around us. To all artists whose work witnesses, illuminates untold and disguised histories, brings clarity and truth to our lives, and shifts the representation of black and brown bodies: THANK YOU.
Our colleagues at artEquity have compiled an excellent list of anti-racism resources for taking action, making donations, and self-educating here. We welcome feedback from our community on other resources to share.
Sending strength and love,
Christa Blatchford, Executive Director, & Ron Bechet, Board Chair