Nikole Hannah-Jones
Nikole Hannah-Jones

BALTIMORE, MD (UPDATED December 10, 2019)—On Tuesday, December 17, The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) will host The Necessity of Tomorrow(s): Future Histories, a free conversation with award-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones who created The 1619 Project for The New York Times; activist/art collector Pamela J. Joyner; and Baltimore-based artist and art professor Zoë Charlton. The event is part of the BMA’s The Necessity of Tomorrow(s) series, which brings together artists, writers, and thought leaders to examine and discuss issues and ideas at the intersections of art, race, and social justice. For this event, BMA Chief Education Officer Gamynne Guillotte will moderate a panel discussion about how a more complete accounting of history makes different futures possible. The Necessity of Tomorrow(s): Future Histories is free and open to the public from 6 to 10 p.m. Seating is first come, first seated in the BMA Auditorium and in live-streamed locations throughout the museum. The event includes free admission to the BMA’s Generations: A History of Black Abstract Art exhibition and cocktail reception with music, cash bar, and light bites.

The Necessity of Tomorrow(s): Future Histories is being organized in conjunction with Generations: A History of Black Abstract Art, which offers a sweeping new perspective on the contributions black artists have made to the evolution of visual art from the 1940s to the present moment. Artists featured include pioneers of postwar abstraction once overlooked by history, such as Norman Lewis, Alma W. Thomas, and Jack Whitten, as well as artists from a younger generation such as Kevin Beasley, Mark Bradford, Martin Puryear, Lorna Simpson, and many others.

The event begins at 6 p.m. with free admission for the Generations exhibition, followed by a 7 p.m. moderated discussion and Q&A with the audience. The evening continues with a reception featuring a live musical performance by Jamal Moore-Organix Trio and a hip-hop and electronica dance music set by DJ Harvey Dent. Visitors are also invited to participate in an interactive mural painting project lead by multi-disciplinary illustrator and muralist Megan Lewis and a culinary exploration of traditional and modern soul food dishes by Chef David Thomas of Ida B’s Table. The Generations galleries will remain open until 10 p.m.

Launched in 2017, The Necessity of Tomorrow(s) borrows its title from an essay by science fiction author Samuel Delany that argues for the role for creative speculation in making a more just future. The series has previously hosted talks with artists Mark Bradford, Hank Willis Thomas, Mickalene Thomas and filmmaker Boots Riley, and author Ta-Nehisi Coates.

The Necessity of Tomorrow(s) is generously sponsored by Suzanne F. Cohen and the Cohen Opportunity Fund. Nikole Hannah-Jones appears courtesy of The Lavin Agency Speakers Bureau.

Nikole Hannah-Jones is an award-winning investigative journalist who covers racial injustice for The New York Times Magazine, and is the lead writer for The New York Times’ major multimedia initiative, The 1619 Project. Named for the year the first enslaved Africans arrived in America, the project features an ongoing series of essays and art on the relationship between slavery and everything from social infrastructure and segregation to music and sugar. She was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow in 2017 for reshaping national conversations around education reform. Hannah-Jones has also received a Peabody, a Polk, and a National Magazine award for her story on choosing a school for her daughter in a segregated city. Hannah-Jones co-founded the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting with the goal of increasing the number of reporters and editors of color. She holds an MA in Mass Communication from the University of North Carolina and a BA in History and African American studies from the University of Notre Dame. She is currently writing a book on school segregation called The Problem We All Live With, to be published on the One World imprint of Penguin/Random House.

Pamela J. Joyner is the Founder of Avid Partners, LLC, and has nearly 30 years of experience in the investment industry.  Currently, Joyner is focused on her philanthropic interests in the arts and education. She is a trustee of The Art Institute of Chicago and the J. Paul Getty Trust, chair of the Tate Americas Foundation, and a member of the Director’s Circle of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and a member of the Modern and Contemporary Art Visiting Committee of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.  In the education arena, she serves on the board of the Art & Practice Foundation. She previously served as a member of President Obama’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities.  She and her husband Alfred Giuffrida started The Joyner/Giuffrida Collection in 1999. They originally focused on abstract work by post-war and contemporary African American artists. The collection is comprised of hundreds of works ranging from pieces dated 1945 to the present day. The collection’s focus has now expanded to incorporate a more global perspective with artists from Africa and the global African diaspora.

Zoë Charlton (Baltimore, MD) creates drawings, collages, and animations that explore her subject’s relationship to culturally loaded objects and landscapes. She received her MFA degree from the University of Texas at Austin and has participated in residencies at Artpace (TX), McColl Center for Art + Innovation (NC), the Skowhegan School of Painting (ME), and the Patterson Residency at the Creative Alliance (MD). Her work has been included in national and international exhibitions including The Delaware Contemporary (DE), the Harvey B. Gantt Center (NC), Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (AR), Studio Museum of Harlem (NY), Contemporary Art Museum (TX), Zacheta National Gallery of Art (Poland), and Haas & Fischer Gallery (Switzerland).  She is a recipient of a Pollock-Krasner grant (2012) and a Rubys grant (2014). Public collections include Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (AR), Birmingham Museum of Art (AL), Studio Museum in Harlem (NY), and the Phillips Collection (DC). She holds a seat on the Maryland State Arts Council and is a co-founder of ‘sindikit, a collaborative art initiative, with her colleague Tim Doud. Charlton is an Associate Professor in the Department of Art at American University in Washington, DC.

At A Glance

The Necessity of Tomorrow(s): Nikole Hannah-Jones & Pamela Joyner
Tuesday, December 17, 2019
Award-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones, activist/art collector Pamela Joyner, and Baltimore-based artist and art professor Zoë Charlton discuss how a more complete accounting of history makes different futures possible in a conversation with moderator Lauren Haynes from the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. The event is part of the BMA’s The Necessity of Tomorrow(s) series and produced in conjunction with Generations: A History of Black Abstract Art, on view at the museum through January 19, 2020. The event is free and open to the public. Seating is first come, first seated.

6:00 p.m.:    BMA galleries open

6:30 p.m.:    Doors to the BMA Auditorium open. Seating is first come, first seated.

7:00 p.m.:    Program begins and is live-streamed in other locations throughout the museum

8:00 p.m.:    Q&A with the audience in the BMA Auditorium

8:30 p.m.:    Cocktail reception with live music, cash bar, and light bites

10:00 p.m.:  Galleries close

About the Baltimore Museum of Art

Founded in 1914, the Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) inspires people of all ages and backgrounds through exhibitions, programs, and collections that tell an expansive story of art—challenging long-held narratives and embracing new voices. Our outstanding collection of more than 97,000 objects spans many eras and cultures and includes the world’s largest public holding of works by Henri Matisse; one of the nation’s finest collections of prints, drawings, and photographs; and a rapidly growing number of works by contemporary artists of diverse backgrounds. The museum is also distinguished by a neoclassical building designed by American architect John Russell Pope and two beautifully landscaped gardens featuring an array of modern and contemporary sculpture. The BMA is located three miles north of the Inner Harbor, adjacent to the main campus of Johns Hopkins University, and has a community branch at Lexington Market. General admission is free so that everyone can enjoy the power of art.

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