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A Letter from the Acting Executive Director


I hope that your summer has been a pleasant one and that, like all of us at the David C. Driskell Center, you are looking forward to an exciting year.

As important as keeping you informed is talking to you about the future of the Center. I would like to begin that conversation by talking about the important role that the Center can play in not only continuing to document and promote the artistic legacy of the African American Artists to the canon of art, but also in participating in the discourse regarding its value and unique importance. In spite of the many achievements of artists of color in the institutional (museums) and commercial (auctions, international private collectors) art world in the past 10 years, there remains an inconsistency in opportunities, critical reviews and assessment of the works and careers of major artists and emerging talents. The Center is poised to become a critical voice in articulating this need and establishing a platform for its importance and historical relevance.

I have been blessed throughout my career as a practicing artist to have been able to work with some of our most acclaimed artists of color – many of those who have never received proper recognition for their contributions. The Center recognizes both the absence of a critical and honest dialogue around those unacknowledged contributions, as well as the almost absent critical discussion of currently practicing artists. These absences in discourse are illuminated by the David C. Driskell Center Archives – particularly by the letters and correspondence of David Driskell over some 60 years to some of America’s most important artists and cultural leaders. We cannot allow our meaning and value to always be assigned or defined by forces or circumstances by which we have no influence or participation.

I am excited to be a part of an already successful year and am looking forward to continued successes as we progress on our journey. We hope that you enjoy the Center’s news and updates throughout this newsletter.

With best regards,

Prof. Curlee R. Holton
Acting Executive Director

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