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The art world, especially museums, has historically highlighted works by mostly white — and mostly white male — artists. You might have missed out on seeing much art by Black artists unless you intentionally sought it out.
Art experts at Etsy, Society6 and Saatchi Art say they have all seen searches for Black artists rise in recent days.
In fact, between June 1 to June 9, Etsy saw about one search every 30 seconds for Black-owned shops and sellers, according to Dayna Isom Johnson, Etsy’s resident trend expert. And Stephanie Dixon, director of brand and content for Society6, said the site has “seen a rise in people purchasing art that speaks to them on a deeper level,” including “intentionally seeking to support the practice of BIPOC or LBGTQIA+ artists.”
Each of the artist-friendly sites has been featuring Black creatives, too — from Etsy’s guide to Black-owned Etsy shops to Society6 and Saatchi Art’s featured artists pages.
Although you should always support Black artists and artisans, it’s especially important now as Black-owned businesses have been hit hard during the pandemic. Consumers looking for ways to put their spending power to good use can support Black-owned jewelry shops, shop from Black-owned beauty brands, buy books from Black authors — and seek out Black artists to know and follow.
“Collect artworks by Black artists, donate to organizations that support Black creatives and educate yourself about the amazing work that Black artists are making now and have made historically.”
– Jeanne Anderson, general manager, Saatchi Art
Jeanne Anderson, general manager of Saatchi Art, recommended seeking out collections that feature Black artists, finding books about them and following the artists on social media.
“Collect artworks by Black artists, donate to organizations that support Black creatives and educate yourself about the amazing work that Black artists are making now and have made historically,” Anderson said.
One of Saatchi Art’s featured artists right now is Dawn Beckles, whose work is inspired by her day-to-day experiences and early childhood memories of Barbados. Her art includes paintings, like this one of colorful dining room with patterned chairs, and collages, like one that was made with spray paint.
“I create imagined interiors and still life settings that celebrate the relationship between an item and its owner,” Beckles told HuffPost Finds.
We asked Johnson, Dixon and Anderson about the Black artists to know and follow right now. Below, you’ll find their recommendations.
ArtByMonday / Etsy
Dawn Beckles / Saatchi Art
Idris Habib / Saatchi Art
Kendra Dandy (theebouffants)
theebouffants / Society6
Lisa Hunt / Saatchi Art
ArtByDanielleLouise / Etsy
ArtbyDinaD / Etsy
LouLouArtStudio / Etsy
Morgan Harper Nichols
Morgan Harper Nichols / Society6
Gregory Prescott / Society6
Rapheal Crump / Saatchi Art
EmmaMakeStudio / Etsy
Lo Harris / Society6
Aaron Ricketts / Society6
Lauren Mckenzie Noel
Lauren Mckenzie Noel / Saatchi Art