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Having a home means having shelter. It is also indicative of safety, having a sense of place, belonging, and familiarity. They say home is where the heart is, and ARTE NOIR is a warm heart for Black art and culture in an area that left many feeling as if their future had been foreclosed upon by dramatically shifting demographics and displacement.

Our opening this fall signaled a new opportunity to reclaim some of what has been lost over the last few decades. A rich history of northward migration, generational ownership, and vibrant culture is now being restored. We’re building a model for community partnership and putting art at the very center.

With your help, ARTE NOIR has become an integral part of reclamation movements in the Central District. This benefits the vitality of our entire city.

After crossing the finish line on our first 90-days of operation, here are a few highlights:

  • Over 500 people walked through our doors on opening day, September 17, 2022.

  • Relationships with over 40 artists and makers have been cultivated to bring products to the public for sale

  • A state-of-the-art gallery system creates a centerpiece for the display of art from the Onyx Fine Arts Collective

  • ARTE NOIR is a destination for out-of-town visitors, previous Central District residents and descendants of former residents, current residents, and most importantly, artists

Building space and creating a place for Black art and culture is not new to the ARTE NOIR team. Our Executive Director Jazmyn Scott arrived at ARTE NOIR with overflowing passion and respect for the richness of Black creativity. After decades of involvement in, and being nurtured at Langston Hughes, Jazmyn was named the first employee, as a programmer, and producer for the community-formed LANGSTON. This trend continued with Jazmyn becoming the first ARTE NOIR employee. Together, Jazmyn and I bring over four decades of leadership and care for the arts, with a particular emphasis on Black art and culture.

We built this home in less than 9 months(!), which would be impossible without the support of our donors, readers, and store patrons. As we come to the close of this year, we hope you will continue to uplift our work to ensure that future generations will be nurtured and inspired.

With your help, we will continue to grow this home for Black art and culture, and nurture the needs of artists in search of a place that welcomes and represents them.

On behalf of the entire ARTE NOIR team and Board of Directors, we wish you the happiest of holiday seasons and we thank you for allowing us to create a home for Black Art + Culture!

Vivian Phillips

A dark skinned woman with short bleached hair and a colorful dress  reads to a little girl on a rug
Executive Director Jazmyn Scott cozies up with a young reader in our Reading Nook. Image credit Michael B. Maine


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