The preservation of Nina Simone’s childhood home has been deemed necessary work, prompting artists such as Julie Mehretu, Rashid Johnson, Ellen Gallagher, and Adam Pendleton to purchase the site in 2017 to save it from demolition.
After gaining support from the National Trust for Historic Preservation and other community members, tennis star Venus Williams has now joined the preservation efforts to help raise funds for the project.
To kick off the fundraising, an in-person auction of artwork by renowned artists has been organized, with an online sale to accompany it.
Williams expressed her gratitude for the contributions made by the artists and her collaboration with Pendleton in curating the auction, with the hope of preserving the legacy of Nina Simone and her musical vision.
Brent Leggs, the Senior Vice President of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and Executive Director of the Heritage Action Fund, expressed his confidence in the success of the upcoming auction and the importance of this partnership for preserving Nina Simone’s legacy.
Leggs emphasized the significance of the collaboration between the artists, Venus Williams, and Pace Gallery, as it showcases how art and preservation can come together to permanently preserve Simone’s remarkable legacy.
He further stated that this project will inspire a new generation of diverse leaders who will memorialize the places where Black history happened. Online bidding for the auction will open to the public on May 12th and close on May 22nd.