News Recap: June 15, 2018

A weekly update of art world news.

Roy DeCarava,  Swimmers , 1950 ©The Estate of Roy DeCarava 2018. All rights reserved. Courtesy David Zwirner

Roy DeCarava, Swimmers, 1950 ©The Estate of Roy DeCarava 2018. All rights reserved. Courtesy David Zwirner

David Zwirner Now Represents the Estate of Roy DeCarava
Roy DeCarava started photographing New York in the 1940s, focusing his lens on black lives in the city. Since his death in 2009 at the age of 89, DeCarava’s work has caught the attention of international galleries and artists alike. David Zwirner is now the official rep of Roy DeCarava’s estate after discovering his work at the Tate Museum last year. DeCarava’s photographs now live among those of more traditional mediums with Zwirner saying, “I don’t think of photographers as photographers—I think of them as artists. What we need to do as a gallery is bring together the most unique voices in the visual arts, no matter what the medium and no matter when they worked.” Zwirner also recognized, “The world of renowned African-American photographers is relatively small when you look at the ’50, ’60s, and ’70s, and Roy’s career is a classic case. It was tougher for African-American artists to be heard in those years than it is today, and that’s one of the reasons we don’t know the work more. If you talk to people in the black community, he is really a benchmark of art-making in the 20th century. He’s a giant to those who know the work, and I think he’ll be a real discovery for those, like myself, who didn’t know.” DeCarava is known for his work photographing life in Harlem, especially his photos of jazz musicians. He once told the New York Times, “One of the things that got to me was that I felt that black people were not being portrayed in a serious and in an artistic way.”
Read the full story (ArtNews)

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art Acquires Ponte City (2008-14)
South African photographer Mikhael Subotzky spent six years photographing the destruction of Ponte City, a Modernist high-rise apartment block in Johannesburg. The resulting collection of work has been acquired by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art from Art Basel. The photographic installation documents the aftermath of the apartheid, still relevant today as seen through Subotzky’s lens. The artist has said, “The history of the country and of apartheid can be spoken about through this building.” Ponte City is the museum’s first large acquisition of South African work and will be exhibited sometime in 2020 or 2021.
Read the full story (The Art Newspaper)

Photographs of Palestinian Life Published From Israeli Military Archives
When Israel was founded 70 years ago, Israelis raided the homes and belongings of over 750,000 Palestinians who had fled, keeping all of the important historical finds in their classified archives. As peace talks between Palestine and Israel ebb and flow, one historian gained access to the Israeli Military Archives and documented what she found. Rona Sela has spent the last 20 years uncovering Palestinian artifacts in the Israeli archives and recently published a book on her findings. Included was a collection of photographs taken from Lebanon’s Cultural Arts Section of the Palestinian Liberation Organization in 1982, personal photographs, films, and documents from families, and even content confiscated from entire libraries. Palestinians hope that these important materials documenting their heritage will be released to the public in the near future.
Read the full story (The Art Newspaper)