ANNUAL REPORT 2020

Brooklyn Rider perform borderlands... by Matana Roberts
Brooklyn Rider perform borderlands... by Matana Roberts

DEAR FRIENDS,

Our world, just as yours, has changed dramatically in the last year. We have been forced to adapt and have taken the opportunity to look at our mission with new eyes. This has been a year where business as usual gave way to the unexpected, where we were called to be flexible while still holding steadfast in our commitment to the BMC legacy and our extended community. In order to do this, we knew we had to slow down and listen: listen to how we can nurture and cultivate beauty during dark days, how we can confront implicit bias in our organization and the art world at large, and how we can reimagine our work to become more inclusive by making deeper connections locally and internationally. We are privileged to have a blueprint set forth by Black Mountain College that valued the greater good, experimentation, and accountability. We hope that in the last year we have earned your trust in us to uphold this legacy.

We are grateful to those in our community who have helped us navigate this difficult year and our evolving future. Our board of directors and staff were challenged to end cycles of harm and are indebted to those who supported and humbled us through transparent, open conversation and inspired collaboration. It has been a privilege to find opportunities for growth, knowing that massive change must come from small beginnings.

While several of the museum’s planned exhibitions and major signature events were postponed, such as the annual {Re}HAPPENING and ReVIEWING Black Mountain College International Conference, BMCM+AC adapted to this change in circumstances by shifting our attention to providing online programming during the six months we were closed to the public, from mid-March to mid-September. In a year when so many cultural organizations suffered tremendous losses, we were lucky to receive support from generous donors, government agencies, and private foundations that allowed us to retain our entire staff and to continue providing direct support to individuals producing new creative work and scholarship in the spirit of Black Mountain College.

As we collectively begin the process of healing over the coming year, we hope that we will be able to see many more of you in person and look forward to activating our galleries once again with performances and gatherings. However, we have no intention of going back to “normal.” We have found a meaningful path forward and promise to remain vigilant in the face of injustice and to continue to respond to our ever-changing world. This is the only way to honor BMC’s legacy. Your trust in us, your perspectives, and your belief in the lasting value of innovation and experimentation make what we do possible. In our 2020 Annual Report, we invite you to join us in looking back on this year’s challenges & accomplishments as we enter this new future together.

GOING DIGITAL

Through our Museum from Home Initiative, established in March of 2020, over 9,000 of you joined us for streaming performances and programs. BMCM+AC collaborated with 50+ artists and scholars from across 4 continents through digital programs, publications, and residencies. With the belief that creativity can be a catalyst for change, we prioritized supporting artists, scholars, and curators locally and across the globe. Contributions from individuals and funders made this possible while keeping our programs free and open to all during this time when they could have the greatest impact.

With your support, BMCM+AC has: 

  • Facilitated 17 conversations that shed light on subjects like BMC’s first African American student, Alma Stone Williams; artist Ruth Asawa’s scientific inspiration; composer John Cage’s love of mushrooms; as well as perspectives from contemporary performers and artists.
  • Produced 8 online performances from artists including Brooklyn Rider and Matana Roberts, Kimathi Moore, Sofia Jernberg, Third Coast Percussion and Bana Haffar, and Turning Jewels Into Water. 
  • Hosted a digital Active Archive residency with UK-based participatory artists Leap Then Look
  • Published two new volumes of the open-access online Journal of Black Mountain College Studies
  • Made accessible hundreds of works from our permanent collection, the largest collection in the world dedicated to BMC with 4,000+ objects and artworks. 

NEW FACES 

This year, we welcomed four new members to our Board of Directors, bringing with them their wide ranging talents and perspectives.

Richard Chess is a prolific poet and essayist. He’s published four books of poetry, the most recent of which is Love Nailed to the Doorpost. He has served as writer-in-residence at the Brandeis Bardin Institute and as a member of the faculty of the Jewish Arts Program at Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center. He directed UNC Asheville’s Center for Jewish Studies from 1992 to 2020. At UNC Asheville, he is the Roy Carroll Professor of Distinguished Arts & Sciences. He was one of the founders of UNC Asheville’s contemplative inquiry initiative.

Joseph Pearson believes in the power of art to provoke and expand society’s re-imagination. His role as an artist is as both observer and activist.

Cherry Lentz Saenger is a retired associate professor from Mars Hill University where she taught media, women’s studies and films courses. She has a Masters in Liberal Arts from University of North Carolina. Since her retirement from MHU she has been involved in the arts community through local board work and recently co-curated an exhibition at Pink Dog Creative.

Nancy (Nan) Zander has been in the art business for forty years, specializing in 19th and 20th century American paintings for auction houses and legendary art galleries, her own business in NY and Paris, and has put together various corporate and private collections. She is currently an auctioneer, the American Painting specialist and General Manager at Brunk Auctions in Asheville, as well as a choreographer and teacher for the Asheville Ballet Company.

 

BY THE NUMBERS

BMCM+AC by the numbers looks very different in a year when our doors were closed to the public for six months, events had to be postponed, and visitor capacity was limited in the interest of public health. But as the number of people who entered our galleries in person decreased, thousands of visitors joined us for virtual programs over Zoom, YouTube, Instagram, and more. We saw new and familiar faces come together to learn and be inspired by the multifaceted legacy of Black Mountain College.

AUDIENCES & PARTICIPANTS
11,600 guests and online program attendees
545 active members
85 first time members
90+ collaborators
3 gallery exhibitions
2 digital exhibitions

PROGRAMS
46 events
17 lectures + conversations
3 film screenings
3 workshops
10 performances
14 Instagram takeovers + live talks
4 BMC Spotlight videos

DIGITAL
75,000 visitors to blackmountaincollege.org
11,000 Facebook followers
10,850 Instagram followers
4,400 e-newsletter subscribers

DIVE DEEPER

There’s so much to share with you, from our full roster of programs to this year’s collection acquisitions and publications.

You can find all this and more in the 2020 Annual Report PDF linked below.

THANK YOU TO OUR 2020 SUPPORTERS
Foundation and Government Support
Aaron Copland Fund
Asheville Area Arts Council
Amphion Foundation
Beattie Foundation
Buncombe County Tourism and Development Authority
Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation
Marion Stedman Covington Foundation
Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Foundation for the Arts
Henry Luce Foundation
National Endowment for the Arts
New Music USA
North Carolina Arts Council
North Carolina Humanities Council
North Carolina Department of Commerce
South Arts
Wikimedia Foundation
Windgate Foundation

BMC Circle $15,000 and up
Donald and Cynthia Carson
Hedy Fischer and Randy Shull
Sydney and Michael Green
Jim and Kendall Oliver / AVL Technologies

BMC Patrons $1,000 and up
Anonymous Donors
Helga and Jack Beam
John Byrd and Ellen Clarke
Trevor R. Drake and Anne R. Albright
Todd Fowler
Thomas Frank
Barry and Sandy Friedlander
Jeffrey Gardiner
John and Sarah Green
Elizabeth Holden
Larry Hopkins and Courtney Lerman
Bruce Hughes and Nancy Kirkland
Ron Janssen
Michael and Hanna Manes
Robert and Karen Milnes
Minigowin Fund of the Community Foundation of WNC
Yasuhito Nagahara
Peggy Newell
Carol Pennell
Rob Pulleyn
Patrick Rumaker
Cherry and Paul Saenger
Andy Scott
Susan Turner
Judith Upjohn
Mitchell Wolfson

BMC Benefactors $500 and up
Katie and Gus Adams
Tom Butler and Marilyn Laufer
Ellen Carr
Richard Chess
Roger and Corinne Cram
John English
John Farquhar
Nancy Holmes
Jan and Bruce Manes
Mark Nowotarski
Marya Roland
Jim Samsel
David Worley

BMC Sustainers $250 and up
Joel and Marla Adams
Margot Ammidown and Michael Carlebach
Jason Andrew
Asheville School
Rod and Bess Baird
Ann Batchelder and Henri Kieffer
Polly and Scott Beam
Karen Bell and Ben Maiden
Better Lemon Creative Audio
William Bissell
Karen K. and Elbert (Buster) Brown
Daniel Casse
Marcia Cohen
Blaise deFranceaux
Lois Green
Robert Hazelgrove and Dan McLawhorn
Lindsay Hearn
Gary and Ellen Henschen
Jeff Kinzel and Diana Stoll
Linda and Ron Larsen
Tom Lecky
David Leiber
Dave Peifer and Brenda Carleton
Jim Peterson
PHOTO+
Melinda Raab
Hilary Rice
Joel Rosenberg
Samsel Architects
George Schluderberg
Glen Shults and Linda Vespereny
Libby Skamfer
Teresa Swan Tuite
Mary Holden Thompson
Jason Turner
Michael and Mary Ann Weston
Henry Weverka
Amanda Wiles
Kenneth Youngblood

BMC Fans $120 and up
Peter Alberice and Sandra Stambaugh
Mary Alm and Darrell Russell
Philip and Jacqueline Blocklyn
Wade Brickhouse
Pat and Ed Butler
Missy and Wes Cochran
Sharon and Rick Gruber
Stephen Cohen and Lynne Harty
Dorothy E. Corbin
Aiko Cuneo
Stephen Keeble and Karen DePew
Carol Dugger
David Feingold
Jonathan Golden
Susan Henry-Crowe
Grace Holden
Susan Holden
Vincent Katz
Michael Kellner
Diane and David Kent
Charles Krekelberg and Aimee Ellingsen
Karen J. Maj
Pam Morrell
Elin O’Hara Slavick
Karin Peterson
Demetri Poulis
Isabel Rubio
Ira Sloan and Lina Evans
Martin Tatarka
Martha Treichler
Kathy Triplett
Larry Turner

BMC Creative Partners $75 and up
Nancy Averett
Blackbird Frame & Art, LLC
Lisa Blackburn and John Hartom
Nathan and Anne Burkhardt
Julie Caro
Gary and Laura Cooper
Thorns and Perry Craven
Brenda Danilowitz
Chris Dismukes
Christine Dowd
Kit Dreier (in honor of)
Ted Dreier (in memory of)
Jeannie DuBose
Dean Eastman
Ann Ehringhaus
Mary Farmer
Phil Fryberger
Jonathan Golden
David and Barbara Goist
Ron Goudreau
Nina Gregg and Douglas Gamble
Deborah Haynes
George Holden and Anne Cameron
Patti Hughes
Eric Jungermann
Brad Kalbfeld
Carol Kalbfeld (in memory of)
Jon Jicha
Steve Jones
Monique Lanoix
Adam Larsen
Jill and Joe Lawrence
Susan Maley
Virginia McKinley
Lori McLeese
Lyn Miller
Bruce and Bonnie Milne Gardner
Herbert Oppenheimer
Mary Ellen and Leonard Porter
Terry and Holly Reiling
Sarah Reincke
Sammy Sams
Constance Schrader
Elaine Smyth
Ted and Susan Stebbins
Bill and Heli Tomford
W. Ragland Watkins (in memory of)
David and Sheri Wright

Donors up to $75
Carol Anders
Linda Andrews
LuAnn Arena
Sally and Bill Atkins
Eric Baden
Matthew Banash
Marion “Pinky” Bass
Cherry Bassermann
Jeffery Beam and Stanley Finch
Karen Bearor
Anita Beatty
Diana Bellgowan
Margaret Berman
Jacob Blass
Elaine Bleakney
Connie Bostic
Georgia Watkins Brennan
Cynthia Bringle
Mary Brosch
Ruth Shedwick-Bryant
Colby Caldwell
Molly Cassidy and Anna Helgeson
James Cavanaugh
Katherine Chaddock
Hilary Chiz
George Chu
Andrea Clarke
Curt and Julie Cloninger
N. Noon Coda
Annette Coleman
Alberto Colonia and George Hunker
Robert Cooper
Scott Cooper
Bray Creech and Dustin Rhodes
Robin Croog
Geoffrey Cunningham and Rebecca Boyden
Chelsea Czuchra
John Dancy-Jones
Renee Dankert
Charles Darwent
Erin Dickey
Ron Djuren
William Eakins
Robert Early
Constance Ensner
Sharon and Vic Fahrer
Anita Feldman
Michael D. Fisher
Suzanne and Marshall Fisher
Chas Fitzgerald
Belinda Fromson
Roxanne Frue
Will Gale
Belle Gironda
John Goist
Brian Goldston
Katherine and Hank Green
Gerry Grimm
Linda Gritta
Molly Gross
Ursula Gullow
Edwin Gunn
Janet Hand
Erasmus Hardee
Barbara Harmon
Margaret Harper
Nikki Harris
Mary Emma Harris
Lisa Hart
Tom Hayes
Linda Heinrich
Barbara Heller
Stephen Hendricks
Karen Herold
Duane Heyman
Chris Higgins
Shana Hill
Jey Hiott
Judith Hoffman
William Inman
Susan Jackewicz
Daniel Jacobs
Sandy Johnson
Henrikus Joko Yulianto
Cambiz Khosravi
James Kilbourne
Greg Killmaster
Lesley King
Ken Klemp and Tom Wilkey
Anna Koloseike
Adele LaBrecque
Laura Ladendorf
Rev. Dr. Ann Laird Jones
Lisa Lee
Betsy and Steve Levitas
Deborah Lewis and Tom Lang
Linda Liukas
Rena Lindstrom
Billie Lofland and Judy McAfee
Patricia MacIsaac
Diane Marchione
Jessica Marlow
Madeline Mayor
Lisa McCarty
Paul McDonald and John McClain
Jean McLaughlin
Pennie McLean
Treva McLean
Ivy McQuade
Glen Miska
Susie Mosher
William Murdoch
Martha and Donald Neblett
Noel Nickle
Donna and Ronald Oser
Robin Paris
Joseph Pearson
George Peery and Mary Stair
Patsy Pettus
Joan Petty
Jeremy Phillips
Richard and Judith Pigossi
Barbara Pressman
Charles Prince
Michael Propst
Zoe Quadflieg
Adrian Quattlebaum
Gabriele Rainey
Jocelyn Reese
Susan Rhew
Dorothea Rockburne
Joseiah and Marianne Rogers
Mary Rondthaler
Marilyn Rosenberg
Copland Arnold Rudolph
Michael Sartisky
Deborah Schauffler
Frieder Schulz
Sarah Scott
Jan and Charley Sheaffer
David Shurbutt
David Silver
Leverett Smith, Jr.
Katherine Soniat
Kent Spillman
Rachel Stein
Eric Steineger
James Stern
Jill Sternberg
Terry Taylor
Monika Teal
Jennifer Tran
Lou Ella Tucker
Cynthia Walker
Callie Warner
Angelyn Whitmeyer
Stephan Wilcox
Anne Willis
Richard Wilson
Stan and Jennifer Wilson
Forest Woodward
Katharine Woodwell
Thomas Wright