Brooklyn Museum sparks controversy with hiring of white curators

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BROOKLYN -

A recent Brooklyn Museum staffing announcement appears to have incited outrage throughout the borough.

Many have expressed anger and disappointment on social media, condemning the museum's appointment of two white curators -- Drew Sawyer for photography and Kristen Windmuller-Luna for the African art collections.

Many posted their disapproval of the museum appointing two white curators -- especially a white woman instead of an African-American person to manage the museum's African art.

According to a 2015 Andrew W. Mellon Foundation survey, African-Americans make up only 4 percent of all curators and other similar positions.

Windmuller-Luna received her Ph.D. from Princeton University and has worked as an African arts research specialist. But whether she's qualified did not seem to be a point of contention for some museum attendees who spoke with News 12.

"Of course a white person can specialize in African-American photography and art, but here it is not quite so simple," one person said.

Both new curators are expected to start in their new positions next month.

The museum released a statement that reads, "The Brooklyn Museum is committed to equity. Our diverse staff works hard to create exhibitions, public programs and educational activities that examine the important social issues of our time as we work to contribute to equity and inclusion in the arts through school collaborations, internships, fellowships, institutional partnerships, and more."

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