BmoreArt News: BMA’s Kevin Tervala Named Chief Curator, “Gamechanger” Andy Cook, and Artful Pizza

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This week’s news includes: BMA appoints Kevin Tervala as Chief Curator and Antoinette Roberts as Assistant Curator for Contemporary Art, Made in Baltimore’s Andy Cook, Ethiopia at the Crossroads at The Walters, Vlado Petrovski and Baltoz Bakery, Kerry James Marshall’s stained glass murals at the National Cathedral in documentary, Common Ground Cafe, Baltimore Center Stage’s Cinderella, John Waters 2023 best movie list, the Monument Lighting, and BOPA’s New Year’s plan — with reporting from Baltimore Magazine, Baltimore Fishbowl, The AFRO, and other local and independent news sources.

Header Image: from Baltoz Bakery’s website


Kevin Tervala photo by Maximilian Franz. Antoinette Roberts photo by Photo Mission Studios.

BMA Announces Appointment of Kevin Tervala as Chief Curator and the BMA appoints Antoinette Roberts as Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art
Press Release :: December 11

The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) announced today that Kevin Tervala has been appointed the museum’s Eddie C. and C. Sylvia Brown Chief Curator, following a nine-month search process. Tervala, a scholar of African art and material culture, has served as the BMA’s Interim Chief Curator since February 2023, and previously held the role of Department Head for the Arts of Africa, the Americas, Asia, and the Pacific Islands (AAAPI) since 2017.

Tervala has played a critical leadership role at the BMA, supporting the museum’s work to develop a new collections roadmap, to enhance its policies on repatriation and ethical collections growth and management, to engage more directly with college and university partners, and to diversify the voices and experiences represented in the museum’s galleries. He is responsible for reconceptualizing the installation of the BMA’s African art collection to emphasize historical and socio-political narratives and a broad range of artistic expression—including modern and contemporary artworks—as well as for the creation of the first collection gallery dedicated to Oceanic art at the museum. Among his numerous exhibitions are The Matter of Bark Cloth (2023); A Perfect Power: Motherhood and African Art (2020); and Kuba: Fabric of an Empire (2019).

As Chief Curator, Tervala will work closely with Asma Naeem, the BMA’s recently appointed Dorothy Wagner Wallis Director, to drive the BMA’s curatorial objectives, strategies, and approaches, with emphases on artistic excellence, diversity, and community engagement. In particular, under Naeem’s leadership, the BMA is focused on presenting art from across cultures and geographies and engaging with modalities of knowledge and understanding that extend beyond European and American perspectives.

Tervala is committed to presenting a wide spectrum of global human experience and expanding beyond commonly known art histories. At the same time, the BMA is working to forge new and stronger relationships with its community, by establishing partnerships with local artists, cultural and community leaders, and academic institutions. Tervala is a Baltimore native and his prior work at the BMA has established him as a collaborative and open partner and resource—well positioning him, along with Naeem, to continue to ground the BMA in the social and cultural fabric of Baltimore and the surrounding region. Tervala will begin in his new role immediately.

The BMA also announced today the appointment of Antoinette Roberts as Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art. Robert joins the BMA from the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York, where she holds the role of Curatorial Assistant in the Department of Photography. She is currently supporting curatorial work in the development of MoMA’s forthcoming exhibition LaToya Ruby Frazier: Monuments of Solidarity. At the BMA, Roberts will work closely with Jessica Bell Brown, the BMA’s Curator and Department Head of Contemporary Art, on research, exhibitions development, and collections growth and management. Her appointment represents the BMA’s commitment to growing its contemporary art team with scholars who have particular expertise in global artistic practices and a keen sense of important emerging voices. She will begin in her new role in February 2024. […]

See also:

Baltimore Museum of Art names Kevin Tervala to replace Asma Naeem as its Chief Curator and Antoinette Roberts to be its Assistant Curator of Contemporary Artby Ed Gunts
Published December 11 in Baltimore Fishbowl



Photography by Matt Roth

GAMECHANGERS | Andy Cook is Making “Buy Local” Part of the Community Consciousness
by Janelle Erlichman Diamond
Published December 11 in Baltimore Magazine

Excerpt: Andy Cook was made in Baltimore. (Well technically Towson but he grew up hanging out in, and inspired by, the city.) But what led him to take a job as the executive director of Made In Baltimore, a Baltimore Development Corporation program that supports local makers and manufacturers, was a winding road.

A job at the Baltimore City Office of Sustainability brought him back to his hometown. He was tasked with fostering a variety of green businesses that all had one thing in common—they needed industrial-zoned land to operate. Cook created a database of both vacant industrial land and industrial buildings that met—and eventually exceeded—the needs of the green business community, which led to the question: Now that we know where all these properties are, what do we do with them?

“I started talking to makers around town and was like, ‘How can the city help connect you with available real estate now that we’ve gotten this database created?’”



“The Virgin and Child with Archangels, Scenes from the Life of Christ, and Saints,” is part of the “Ethiopia at the Crossroads” exhibit, which can be seen at the Walters Art Museum from Dec. 3 to March 3, 2024. (Image Courtesy of the Walters Art Museum)

The Walters Art Museum opens new exhibit displaying 1,750 years of Ethiopian art
by Aria Brent
Published December 11 in The AFRO

Excerpt: The Walters Art Museum opened their latest art exhibit “Ethiopia at the Crossroads” to the public on Dec. 3. The exhibit has 1,750 years worth of Ethiopian art, antiques and artifacts that display the African nation’s rich history from a cultural, artistic and religious standpoint.

Home of more than 220 historical Ethiopian objects, the Walters has a world-renowned collection that has been amplified by lenders in America, Europe and Ethiopia, making for a display of Eastern African culture like no other.

Before the exhibit made its debut, the AFRO spoke with art curator Christine Sciacca about all the planning that went into this exhibit, what guests can anticipate when visiting and what this display of art is bringing to the Baltimore area.



A Documentary Film about Dr. Leslie King Hammond | Go Fund Me

The documentary film ‘A Life in Art: Through the Eye of Dr. Leslie King Hammond’ is a portrait of a renowned art historian, teacher, curator, and artist.

The film explores Leslie’s relationships with a wide variety of artists, highlighting under-represented communities in the visual art world in Maryland, New York, and beyond. The film also tells her life story from the early years growing up in New York City to the challenges she overcame studying to receive her PHD from Johns Hopkins University in the early 1970’s as a member of one of the first classes of African American students to attend. We see firsthand Leslie mentoring incredible artists including Amy Sherald, as she is finishes her portrait of Michelle Obama for the National Gallery in DC, and Joyce J. Scott as she creates a necklace for Leslie to wear as she accepts entry to the Baltimore Sun 2023 Business and Civic Hall of Fame honoree event. The film chronicles how Leslie’s passion for art is driven by personal and collective struggles.

The project carries a message of inspiration; that we can open the door beyond limitations and make visual artists and the work of all makers, more accessible to all communities.

The film is directed by Ben Baker-Lee, and Rassaan Hammond, who is Leslie’s son. “We have had the honor of incredible access to filming Leslie and her world since 2018,” says Lee. “We plan to use the funds raised here to complete the production phase and post-production costs including, editing, color grade, music, sound mix, animation and motion graphics. We plan to finish and hold initial screenings of the film at MICA and the Creative Alliance, before moving into festivals and wider distribution. We are tremendously grateful for your financial support that enables us complete this film and tell Leslie’s inspiring story.”

See also:

Joyce J. Scott – YA KNOW. ft. Kay Lawal-Muhammad (Official Video)



Photography by Scott Suchman

Meet the Local Artist Behind Baltoz Bakery in Towson
by Jane Marion
Published December 6 in Baltimore Magazine

Excerpt: As a first-year college student, Vlado Petrovski, co-owner of Baltoz Bakery in the Towson neighborhood of Anneslie, was studying art and architecture in Rome when he fell in love with the local pizza.

“Pizza has been part of my life since I can remember,” says Petrovski. “I always made it at home, but when I went to Rome and had it there, it was next-level pizza—it blew my mind. They make a pizza rosa there that’s just a little tomato and bread and olive oil and little else. I remember eating that for a month and a half every day and went home and started making it myself.”

In 2012, the Macedonian-born artist traveled to America to study at the Columbus College of Art and Design in Ohio, where his grandparents lived. While still a student, he staged for the high-profile restaurant group Cameron Mitchell. In 2016, he came to Baltimore for graduate school to study painting at the Maryland Institute College of Art, all the while working in his other favorite medium—the art of pizza-making.



A New Film Documents Kerry James Marshall’s Dynamic Stained Glass Windows for the Washington National Cathedral
by Grace Ebert
Published December 6 in Colossal

Excerpt: How do you revise a narrative that some still believe true? And, how do you change that story to focus on perseverance and reform when the fight for justice is ongoing?

In 2017, two stained glass windows commemorating Confederate generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson were removed from the Washington National Cathedral. When Kerry James Marshall (previously) was commissioned to create their replacements, he grappled with these questions, ultimately offering a dynamic pair of works installed this September.

A new short film for Art21’s Extended Play series documents the artist’s process and thinking behind the monumental windows, which were made in collaboration with stained-glass artisan Andrew Goldkuhle. The vibrant pieces depict anonymous protestors engaged in a peaceful demonstration. Some figures holding signs saying “No,” “No Foul Play,” and “Fairness,” slogans inspired by a speech by Chicago’s first Black mayor, Harold Washington. The phrases connect a basic principle of the U.S. Constitution with that of dishonesty and crimes and reflect the need to redress wrongs.



Common Ground's team pose for a photo in the store. PHOTO BY BRIAN O'DOHERTY

Cooperative Ways to Weather the Silver Tsunami
by Jasail Noor
Published December 7 in Yes!

Excerpt: Sierra Allen, 21-year-old barista, had just ended their shift at Baltimore’s Common Ground Cafe on July 2, 2023, when a co-worker texted them the shocking news: Owner Michael Krupp was unceremoniously closing the beloved coffee shop for good and laying off its 30 employees, effective immediately. “It was a moment of shock. I was in a grocery store, and I burst into tears, because no one knew what was going on.”

Allen was devastated by the news that they were losing a job that provided stable employment and a supportive community. The layoffs left them struggling financially—to get unemployment and to keep up with mounting bills. But Common Ground’s workers are a tight-knit group who became even closer as they weathered the challenges of seeing the profitable business through a pandemic. They weren’t ready to give up the shop.

The 20- and 30-something-year-olds relied on each other to endure the sudden job loss, raising thousands of dollars to help each other pay their rent, buy food, and support their families. The staff had already begun working to form a union to fight for better wages and rights in their workplace, and didn’t want another owner taking over. They believed they could reopen Common Ground in a way that gave the workers the power and ownership in the workplace that they felt they deserved.



Jaiden Nuako stars as Cinderella in ArtsCentric’s production of the show at Baltimore Center Stage. (J Fannon)Jaiden Nuako stars as Cinderella in ArtsCentric’s production of the show at Baltimore Center Stage. (J Fannon)

The Blackest ‘Cinderella’ you’ll see in Baltimore is also the most important
by Leslie Gray Streeter
Published December 7 in The Baltimore Banner

Excerpt: As a child raised in the video-on-demand era who also spent the first half of his life as a Walt Disney World pass holder, my 10-year-old Brooks was pretty clear on the specifics of the “Cinderella” story before we saw ArtCentric’s live version at Baltimore Center Stage last week. When it was over, I asked for a recap. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think he was coming for my job as a cultural critic.

“She gets raised nice at first, and then her mom dies and then her dad dies and her stepmom said she wasn’t her real daughter, and she was a maid or a butler to them now,” he said. “When she tried to go to the ball, her stepmother said ‘Nope! You stay here,’ and then they went to the ball and had a lot of fun. Cinderella sang a song and the mice were out, and basically the fairy godmother said, ‘What if this pumpkin turned into your carriage and these mice became your horses and you hop in and you ride?’ She goes to the ball, and the prince looks up and he’s like ‘Sheesh, she’s pretty beautiful. Can I take this dance with you?’ And she says ‘Yes, Sir!’ and they are staring at each other deeeep into their soul, but then she went running, and the prince kept her boot, or her slipper or whatever, like ‘Oh, no she left it!’”

Yeah, kid, that’s pretty much it. Well, there’s one other significant thing.

“Everybody was Black.”



John Waters: Pope of Trash Exhibition, on Wednesday September 13, 2023 at The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, Los Angeles, California

The Best Movies of 2023, According to John Waters
by John Waters
Published December 7 in Vulture

Excerpt: When most people hear my name, they think of the city of Baltimore, where I still live. But few know I have kept a secret apartment in New York City for over three decades. Why? To see fucked-up foreign movies with frontal nudity — that’s why. Here, what you should be watching this year — not at home but in a Gotham art house with a full ticket price.



Fireworks light up the sky around the Washington Monument during the 52nd Monument Lighting at Mount Vernon Place on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023. (Ulysses Muñoz/The Baltimore Banner)

Photos: Baltimore’s historic Washington Monument is lit up for the holidays
by Ulysses Muñoz
Published December 8 in The Baltimore Banner

Excerpt: Baltimore’s historic Washington Monument in Mount Vernon Square was lit up for the holidays Thursday, kicking off the holiday season. Since 1971, Baltimore City has illuminated the monument during the first Thursday in December.

Food trucks provided refreshments as holiday-themed performances went on the main stage, ending with the Morgan State University Choir shortly before the final light show was set to begin.



BOPA Announces New Year’s Eve Programming at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, Including New Drone Show
Press Release :: December 8

Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) is thrilled to announce New Year’s Eve programming for December 31, 2023, at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. We are introducing an exciting element to this beloved annual tradition — a drone show choreographed by Image Engineering, a renowned global event company specializing in laser entertainment headquartered in Curtis Bay. As we bid farewell to the old year and welcome in the new, the skies over Baltimore will be illuminated like never before with a custom-designed drone show paired with traditional fireworks at midnight. Mayor Brandon M. Scott will lead the countdown.

This addition of drone technology to Baltimore’s annual New Year’s Eve celebrations is in alignment with Baltimore’s designation as a federal tech hub, showing how technology can be leveraged in creative ways across sectors — from healthcare to arts and culture — for the betterment of Baltimore.

Prior to the mesmerizing multimedia display, music will fill the Inner Harbor Amphitheatre beginning at 8:00 p.m. with a set by Baltimore-based party performer DJ Curtis of C.James Experience. Performing from two 45-minute sets — at 10:00 and 11:00 p.m. — is Baltimore’s very own hip hop band Soul Cannon, featuring the talents of Eze Jackson, Matt Frazão, Jon Birkholz, and Charles Wilson. Transition beats will be supplied by entertainment company Media Minds, which is also providing production services.

Elsewhere along the waterfront, the National Aquarium is open from 9:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m. Get tickets and plan your visit at The American Visionary Arts Museum is open from 10:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. Get information and tickets at Port Discovery will be open from 10:00 a.m.– 5:00 p.m. and is hosting its annual Noontime New Year Event at 12:00 p.m. Learn more about this all-ages event at The Maryland Science Center is open from 10:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. on both New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Plan your trip at

Thanks to the Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore, the hours of the Inner Harbor Ice Rink are extended until midnight on New Year’s Eve. Get tickets and packages at rink. Phillips Seafood’s Inner Harbor location will be open from 11:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m. Make a reservation at City Cruises is operating its signature New Year’s Eve Brunch Cruise at noon and Dinner Cruise at 9:00 p.m. Get tickets at Finally, Watermark is hosting its annual New Year’s Eve Baltimore Yacht Party from 10:00 p.m.–1:00 a.m. Tickets are available at

Harborplace will also be bustling with activity on New Year’s Eve. Stores, restaurants, and pop-ups will be activated throughout the pavilions, including the Made In Baltimore Holiday Store, which will be open through January 2024 and showcases unique and handmade gifts crafted by talented Baltimore artisans. The usual operating hours for the pavilion stores run until 9:00 p.m., but keep an eye out for extended hours, possibly up until midnight.

Co-produced by BOPA and the City of Baltimore, New Year’s Eve 2024 is sponsored by Visit Baltimore, which is also providing valuable promotional and production support; Pier Six Pavilion, which is providing their space as a launch point for the drone show; and Vane Brothers, which is generously providing the barge for the fireworks free of charge. WJZ-TV CBS is the media partner for the event. We are also grateful for the collaboration and support from both Waterfront Partnership and Downtown Partnership of Baltimore in making New Year’s Eve 2024 an unforgettable event. Follow BOPA on social media (@promoandarts) for the latest updates.



header image: photo from Baltoz Bakery website

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