“Expand the human race view on black history through art.” Ludlow Bailey
In talking with Mr Ludlow Bailey, you find there’s more than meets the eye. He is known for running the biggest contemporary African Art panel in Art Basel, Miami. His 2019 ‘Roots and the Spirit’, exhibition was the Largest Art event on black art Staged in Florida. The question we had was how did we get here?
He has had a lifelong love for African studies where people of the African diaspora came from, and where they’re going. His intrepid disposition and inquisitive personality had him rise through the ranks at Brown University while studying the classics.
During his undergrad in Philosophy, he spoke of wanting to know more this itch actualised itself at the American Classical School in Rome – on Renaissance Art. As an art advisor and cultural curator his self-realization manifested through travelling the world and networking, Ludlow’s aspirations vaulted him to be accepted as a Watson Fellow. During his undergraduate at Brown, he spent time in Dakar under the tutelage of Cheikh Anta Diop as his faculty advisor – a peer of Noam Chomsky and a pioneer in Africana Studies – While working alongside Diop Mr. Bailey worked on the newly developed ideas surrounding contemporary African History, revolutionary ideas cultivated around that time.
Studying art across the gamut of historical and contemporary content he developed in his own words, ‘an instinct for valuable art’. With a core focus on ‘helping a client find their core aesthetic’, with his art advisory spanning three decades now, he sees it as a Labour of love. The love language is an act of service towards contemporary African diaspora art.
As a world traveller exploring the world through scholarship and work experience with an MIA in International Business – from Columbia, Ludlow has been to 45 different African countries gaining a global network and attracting them towards his domestic panel in Art Basel, he is the Ajala traveller of Miami. He is valued by his clientele of domestic Ivy League professionals and International business personnel who work with the institution. He has his Art Basel Panel at the HBCU of Florida Memorial University, focusing on making Contemporary African art investment as a highly intelligible part of his practice. Mr. Bailey finds ‘Global black cultures contributing value to humanity’.
The value of Contemporary African Diaspora art is increasing in value due to the nature of the creative consciousness of the artists involved and buyers are intrigued, this area is where Mr. Bailey hangs his hat, he says ‘Black creativity is invaluable to human development.’ and with 10 years worth of events holding 250 people per year on average at Art Basel in Miami, his words are true to form.
With his vision to ‘expand the human race view on black history through art,’ his energy is directly focused on creating the environmental causes for this thesis to be put into action. By engaging the art world through dialogue with his clients, cultivating experiences, developing experiments and elevating dialogue. After a three-decade pursuit in the labour of love in art, he sees his instincts as his advantage towards collaboration and building the bridges between the information the art world needs and how it can get there.