Rejection sure is tough, especially when you’re a white applicant vying for a spot in a museum internship program that’s explicitly open only to minority groups. So tough, in fact, that one Samantha Niemann is now suing the Getty Foundation for racial discrimination after the institution refused to accept her application to its paid Multicultural Undergraduate Internship program, launched in 1993 to “encourage greater diversity in the professions related to museums and the visual arts.”
As CBSLA first reported, Niemann claims she was “deterred from applying” in February 2015 after receiving word that only individuals of black, Asian, Latino/Hispanic, Native American, or Pacific Islander descent are eligible for the program. Niemann is of German, Irish, and Italian descent, and was thus disqualified from applying because of her race and national origin. Her lawsuit, however, reportedly argues that her 3.7 GPA at Southern Utah University makes her “well-qualified” for the position. Despite her academic success, she somehow overlooked the instructions on the Getty’s website that clearly state that students interested in applying must be “of a group underrepresented in museums and visual arts organizations.” Perhaps that clause, which according to the Getty was added a few months ago, does introduce something of a gray area, but it’s pretty clear, with just a little bit of research, that non-Hispanic whites do not qualify as “underrepresented” in this field.
Niemann’s natural reaction has been to accuse the Getty of violating her civil rights, and she’s now seeking not just punitive but also compensatory damages.
Join Hyperallergic for an online conversation with Kiowa Tribal Museum Director Tahnee Ahtone on January 25 at 7pm (EST).
This week, Patrisse Cullors speaks, reviewing John Richardson’s final Picasso book, the Met Museum snags a rare oil on copper by Nicolas Poussin, and much more.
Graduate students in the University of Denver’s Emergent Digital Practices program work on research with faculty who are engaged directly with their communities, both online and off.
Alexi Worth’s paintings demand a double take that allows viewers to look closer and begin dissembling the painting in order to understand what is being looked at.
Anastasia Pelias’s sculpture builds on this mythological legacy, suggesting we all have the ability to commune with a higher power and influence our futures.
Curated by Jill Kearney, this exhibition in Frenchtown, NJ amplifies stories both local and universal with work by Willie Cole, Sandra Ramos, sTo Len, and more.
Jack Spicer’s poetry can be deeply funny and playful but it has a consistent undercurrent of sadness.
Belinda Rathbone’s biography traces the sculptor’s embrace of kinetic mechanisms to his work in the Singer Sewing Machine factory.
The first lecture is on the relationship between early portrait photography and diverse notions of US identity during the Gilded Age. Register to attend on January 25.
It’s the first time in the country’s history that objects of this significance are offered for public sale.
Schwartz was at the forefront of computer-generated art before desktops or the kind of software that makes it commonplace today.
Curator La Tanya S. Autry shares a set of crucial questions she considers when curating images of anti-Black violence.