Press RoomArcmanoro Niles named speaker for second annual Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture at Phoenix Art Museum

Arcmanoro Niles named speaker for second annual Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture at Phoenix Art Museum

Sep, 27, 2019

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Arcmanoro Niles named speaker for second annual Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture at Phoenix Art Museum

Brooklyn-based contemporary artist will present a public lecture on November 13, 2019

PHOENIX (September 27, 2019) – On November 13, 2019, Phoenix Art Museum will present Brooklyn-based contemporary artist Arcmanoro Niles as the speaker for the Museum’s second annual Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture. A classically trained figurative painter known for his highly saturated portraits within domestic settings, Niles was a recipient of the prestigious Joan Mitchell Foundation grant in 2017. He regularly utilizes Renaissance techniques to recall vulnerable experiences from his own life, often from childhood memories. Niles’ diptych Does a Broken Home Become a Broken Family (2019), which was recently acquired by the Museum with funds provided by the Dawn and David Lenhardt Emerging Artist Acquisition Fund, is on view in the Museum’s 60th anniversary exhibition, PhxArt60: The Past Decade, through January 26, 2020. The lecture is open to the public and will begin at 7 pm on November 13, 2019 in the Museum’s Whiteman Hall. Tickets are $10 for the general public, $5 for Museum Members, and free for Circles of Support and Friends of Contemporary Art (FCA) members.

“We are thrilled to welcome Arcmanoro Niles to Phoenix as the second speaker in the Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture Series,” said Gilbert Vicario, Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs and the Selig Family Chief Curator of Phoenix Art Museum.  “Through the ongoing generosity of Dawn and David Lenhardt, the Museum continues to bring some of the most innovative emerging and established contemporary artists and their works to our community, helping to reinforce Phoenix Art Museum as a nationally recognized destination for contemporary art. We are excited to present Niles and his bold work to our audiences in Arizona as we celebrate the Museum’s 60th anniversary.”

The Museum hosted the inaugural Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture in October 2018 and welcomed Shara Hughes, a stand-out from the 2017 Whitney Biennial, as the speaker. This year’s Emerging Artist Lecture will feature Arcmanoro Niles (b. 1989), a Brooklyn-based artist who was born in Washington, D.C. Niles earned a BFA from Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and an MFA from New York Academy of Art before attending the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. He has participated in exhibitions at the Rachel Uffner Gallery (New York, NY); University of Delaware (Newark, Del.); the David C. Driskell Center (College Park, Md.); Long Gallery (New York, N.Y.); Guild Hall (East Hampton, N.Y.); and Shanghai University (Shanghai, China); among others. His work is included in the collections of the Studio Museum in Harlem, the David C. Driskell Center at the University of Maryland, the Dallas Museum of Art, and the Petrucci Family Foundation Collection of African American Art. A recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters & Sculptors Grant, Niles comes to Phoenix Art Museum after presenting several exhibitions from Los Angeles to New York City.

“The Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture Series aims to introduce Phoenix audiences to some of the nation’s most promising contemporary artists,” said David Lenhardt, a member of the Museum’s Board of Trustees. “Arcmanoro’s work features impactful imagery that encourages viewers to consider important topics, and Dawn and I are delighted to welcome him as this year’s speaker.”

Niles is best known for juxtaposing classic technique such as narrative and drama within contemporary subject matter. Using a signature palette of oranges, blues, and purples, and framing faces in halos of glitter, the artist’s body of work also references European religious portraits. Another interesting feature of his style are the “seekers,” which according to Niles, represent “external” forces. The artist’s painting Does a Broken Home Become a Broken Family (2019) is on view in PhxArt60: The Past Decade, the Museum’s 60th anniversary exhibition highlighting art acquisitions since 2009. Niles is one of 30 artists of color represented in the exhibition, which showcases more than 70 works of art. Moreover, the acquisition of Niles’ work furthers the Museum’s commitment to building a 21st-century collection in which diverse perspectives, including those of artists of color, women, and LGBTQI+ artists, are better represented.

For interviews or to request more information on the Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture, contact the Marketing and Communications Office of Phoenix Art Museum at 602.257.2105 or

About Phoenix Art Museum

Since 1959, Phoenix Art Museum has provided millions of guests with access to world-class art and experiences in an effort to ignite imaginations, create meaningful connections, and serve as a brave space for all people who wish to experience the transformative power of art. Located in Phoenix’s Central Corridor, the Museum is a vibrant destination for the visual arts and the largest art museum in the southwestern United States. Each year, more than 350,000 guests engage with critically acclaimed national and international exhibitions and the Museum’s collection of more than 20,000 works of American and Western American, Asian, European, Latin American, modern and contemporary art, and fashion design. The Museum also presents a comprehensive film program, live performances, and educational programs designed for visitors of all ages, along with vibrant photography exhibitions made possible through the Museum’s landmark partnership with the Center for Creative Photography, University of Arizona. To learn more about Phoenix Art Museum, visit, or call 602.257.1880.

About the Dawn and David Lenhardt Contemporary Art Initiative

Made possible through the generosity of the Arizona-based Lenhardt family, the Dawn and David Lenhardt Contemporary Art Initiative aims to deepen the Museum’s commitment to contemporary art through various programs. The Lenhardt Lecture engages Valley audiences with some of the most acclaimed contemporary artists in the world; the Lenhardt Emerging Artist Acquisition Fund is designed to enable the Museum to specifically collect works by next-generation contemporary artists; the Lenhardt Emerging Artist Lecture Series introduces Valley audiences to emerging contemporary artists on a national scale; and the Dawn and David Lenhardt Gallery, designated for the presentation of contemporary art, includes works acquired with funds from the Lenhardt Emerging Artist Acquisition Fund, loans from national and local collectors, and a rotating series of artworks from the Lenhardts’ own collection.

About PhxArt60: The Past Decade

PhxArt60: The Past Decade showcases more than 70 artworks acquired over the 10 years after the 50th anniversary of Phoenix Art Museum in 2009. The exhibition demonstrates the Museum’s firm commitment to diversity and artistic excellence through a careful selection of works from the departments of modern and contemporary art, Latin American art, American art, Asian art, and fashion design. Of particular note are recently acquired historic photographs by Aaron Siskind, Harry Callahan, and Bruce Davidson that complement the Museum’s permanent collections. In addition, the arrangement of works in the exhibitionopens up the possibility for interdepartmental conversations to emerge as a way of engaging a contemporary, globalized view of visual culture. PhxArt60: The Past Decade is open to the general public during voluntary-donation, pay-what-you-wish hours from 3–9 pm each Wednesday, from 6–10 pm on the first Friday of each month, and from noon–5 pm on the second Sunday of each month.

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