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The Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha, Nebraska, will reopen to the public in September following a $100m renovation and expansion, but one of the biggest shows of its inaugural season—a solo exhibition of new paintings the renowned painter Kehinde Wiley made in response to works in the Joslyn’s collection—has been postponed indefinitely following a series of sexual assault allegations against the artist.

The Wiley show is not longer listed among the upcoming exhibitions at the Joslyn when it reopens to the public on 10 September, the Flatwater Free Press first reported. The Wiley exhibition “will not be presented in 2024”, a spokesperson for the Joslyn tells The Art Newspaper. “We are revisiting our exhibition schedule. […] The Joslyn will announce any updates at a later date.”

The Pérez Art Museum Miami (Pamm) has also postponed its plans to present a major travelling exhibition of Wiley’s work, Kehinde Wiley: An Archaeology of Silence. It was previously scheduled to open at Pamm next month, following a recent run at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. A spokesperson for Pamm said it “has suspended plans to exhibit Kehinde Wiley: An Archaeology of Silence“.

A spokesperson for the Minneapolis Institute of Art, which was to be the next stop for An Archaeology of Silence at Pamm, beginning in February 2025, told Artnews the museum “will not be proceeding with this presentation” in light of the recent accusations against Wiley.

Artists

Kehinde Wiley says he will take legal action to clear his name after fellow artist accuses him of sexual assault

Wiley, who has disputed the allegations in the press, in a cease-and-desist letter and on social media (where many of the allegations were first made public), has called the allegations of rape, sexual assault and misconduct made against him “categorically false and defamatory”. Wiley has claimed that he had consensual encounters with two of his accusers, the artist Joseph Awuah-Darko and the activist Derrick Ingram, while he has said he never met a third accuser, Terrell Armistead. Another accuser, the curator and poet Nathaniel Lloyd Richards, has claimed Wiley inappropriately touched and groped him in 2019 during a date. Several of Wiley’s accusers have said they plan to file a class-action lawsuit against the artist in New York, according to Artnews.

A world-renowned artist with a perennially full lineup of institutional and commercial exhibitions, as well as representation by major galleries including Sean Kelly and Templon, Wiley famously created US president Barack Obama’s official portrait in 2018. His show at the Joslyn was to be one of the marquee offerings of the museum’s reopening programme. Titled Kehinde Wiley: Omaha, it was to feature all-new portraits “specific to the diverse communities of Omaha” and created in response to works in the museum’s permanent collection of European art, according to an earlier announcement.

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