John Guess, the director of the Houston Museum of African American Culture (HMAAC), with the newly installed Spirit of the Confederacy statue (image courtesy HMAAC)

Week in Review is a weekly collection of news, developments, and stirrings in the art world. Subscribe to receive these posts as a weekly newsletter.

Anonymous street artist Banksy purchased and decorated a yacht, which was converted and utilized as a migrant rescue boat. However, Banksy and the boat’s rescue crew say that when the boat surpassed capacity and after one passenger died, their distress calls were ignored.

Art Basel Miami Beach is officially canceled.

Amid the ongoing monuments debate, the Houston Museum of African American Culture has taken in one Confederate statue, a bronze called the “Spirit of the Confederacy,” and placed it in its courtyard. “Healing comes from taking control of negatively impactful symbols and turning them into teaching opportunities to help ensure they never have power again,” said the museum’s CEO, John Guess.

In the UK, the British Museum has relocated a bust of its founding collector, Sir Hans Sloane, from prominent display. In 1753, the slave owner posthumously donated 71,000 objects from his personal collection of naturalist and colonial explorations to King George II.

This week, Black Panther actor Chadwick Boseman died at 43. Over 54,000 people have since signed onto a petition asking that his hometown, Anderson, South Carolina, replace a prominent Confederate statue with the likeness of the actor.

Following international outcry, Jordanian authorities released Emad Hajjaj, a cartoonist who was arrested last week after publishing a satirical cartoon about the diplomatic agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.

After the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) cut salaries by 20%, its employees have drawn attention to major home loans given to executive employees.

Within three days of his nomination as president of the Argentinian art fair arteBA, Juan Carlos Lynch was forced to step down due to sexist and racist posts on his Instagram.

Awards & Accolades

Sonya Clark, “Many” (2019) at the Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia (photo by Jasmine Weber for Hyperallergic)

Sonya Clark was awarded the 2020 Rappaport Prize. | Artforum

The Seattle Art Museum announced the six finalists for the 2020 Betty Bowen Award: Dawn Cerny, Roland Dahwen, Elijah Hasan, Marilyn Montufar, Christian Alborz Oldham, and Tariqa Waters.


Almine Rech Gallery now represents Genesis Tramaine.

Celia Ho was promoted to curator at Hong Kong’s art space Para Site. | Artforum

Lehmann Maupin Gallery now represents Arcmanoro Niles.

Stephen Reily will step down as director of Louisville’s Speed Art Museum. | Courier Journal

Richard Rogers retired from Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, which he founded in 1977. | Dezeen


Siah Armajani (1939–2020), Iranian-American sculptor well-known for his public artworks | New York Times

Gerald D. Hines (1925-2020), real estate developer for whom the University of Houston Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture and Design is named | Houston Chronicle

Joe Ruby (1933–2020), the co-creator of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! | New York Times

David Rolfe Graeber (1961–2020), writer, anthropologist, and activist known for his work with the Occupy Wall Street movement. | AP

Abdel Wahab Yousif (aka Latinos), a Sudanese poet | Arab Lit

Jasmine Weber is an artist, writer, and former news editor at Hyperallergic. Follow her on Instagram and