Art galleries and museums have unfortunately existed as elitist and exclusionary spaces since their inception and have often failed to reach diverse audiences. A 2010 study conducted by the American Alliance of Museums found that African-Americans and Latinos make up only 6% and 9% of museum visitors across the country, respectively. This lapse is often the result of a lack of representation of the narratives and histories of minority populations on the walls of these spaces. Unsurprisingly, this issue also exists among the actual staffs of these institutions as a first of its kind study conducted in 2015 by the Mellon Foundation and the American Association of Art Museum Directors found that people of color represent only 28 percent of museum staffs, with the majority working as janitors or security guards. As the art world seeks to shift this paradigm, individuals in all subsects of the field will have to take responsibility. Issue 013 of Antenna::Signals, entitled Hues, will drop on May 21st at the newly relaunched New Orleans African-American Museum and explore the traditionally monochromatic nature of museums and the rest of the art industry.
Gia Hamilton, Director of the African American Museum
Carl Joe Williams (image), artist
Ndubuisi C. Ezeluomba, PhD, NOMA African Art Curator
John Preble, Founder of Abita Mystery House
Al Jackson, Treme Petit Jazz Museum
Rosa Gomez-Herrin, VIDA