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Hamza Walker Appointed New Executive Director of LAXART

Hamza Walker, who served as associate curator and director of education at the Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago since 1994, is an adjunct professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and cocurated, with Aram Moshayedi, the 2016 edition of the Hammer Museum’s “Made in LA” biennial, has now been named the executive director of LAXART.

“I am honored to be at the helm of one of LA’s premiere nonprofit spaces, to build on its legacy of supporting Los Angeles’s extraordinarily dynamic arts community, and to confront the challenges unique to alternative spaces. I can’t get Sun Ra’s “Fate in a Pleasant Mood” out of my mind,” said Walker.

Executive director and chief curator of the Renaissance Society, Solveig Øvstebø, said of Walker’s transition, “In more than twenty years at the Renaissance Society, Hamza’s curating and writing have made an immeasurable impact on the institution, on Chicago, and on the field of contemporary art. He will be missed dearly here at the Ren, but we want to be the first to congratulate him and LAXART, which will be greatly enriched by his unmatched intellect and wit.”

Walker, who contributed a Best of 2004 to the December 2004 issue of Artforum, has organized recent exhibitions including “A Painting Is A Painting Isn’t A Painting” (2015), at San Francisco’s KADIST; the Renaissance Society’s “Wadada Leo Smith, Ankhrasmation: The Language Scores 1967 - 2015” (2015), cocurated with John Corbett; and “Teen Paranormal Romance” (2014) and “Suicide Narcissus” (2013), two group exhibitions, also at the Ren.