"Those of us who are writing, teaching and otherwise shaping and presenting past and present history need to be mindful that history traditionally has always been a place of selective exclusion as much as it has been a place for selective inclusion masquerading as historical fact. I was reminded of this not too long when I found myself at dinner with a couple of young curators and their patrons. None of them knew the work or name of a single black artists that I asked them about, all of whom I confess had emerged before the 1990s. None of these rang a bell for these young art historians and museum workers who are charged with mounting exhibitions and writing publications that document the expressive work of our time. And these were not obscure or marginal names...to me anyway. If one is going to do this work, one has to be willing and able to do the serious job of excavating history, not merely recognizing the already recognized and hitching your wagon to them. There are still histories waiting to be told and written, and the subjects are indeed hiding in plain sight. One has to believe that the work of bringing others into the center of the discourse truly matters."
To read the rest of this wonderful speech, check out Bey's post here.