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Destinee Ross-Sutton at the Harlem studio of Khari Turner, one of the artists she represents at her gallery.
Photo: Khari Turner, Courtesy of Destinee Ross-Sutton

Creative Mind: Destinee Ross-Sutton

With the launch of Ross-Sutton Gallery in New York, the 25-year-old talent has a new platform devoted to showing and promoting Black artists

Destinee Ross-Sutton with her portrait by Kehinde Wiley Photo: Courtesy of Destinee Ross-Sutton

In December, Destinee Ross-Sutton launched her nomadic gallery’s first installation in New York’s SoHo neighborhood. Devoted to showing and promoting Black artists, Ross-Sutton Gallery embodies the 25-year-old talent’s mission to protect their artworks from the kind of wild speculation that can turn a newcomer’s career on its head. In a model similar to the one she utilized in “Say It Loud (I’m Black and I’m Proud),” a summer online show with Christie’s to benefit artists, buyers are asked to sign a contract promising that they won’t resell for three to five years and if they do, the artist gets 15 percent of the profits. “It’s been quite the leap, but I really think that the gallery stems from a place of wanting to create a little bit of change,” she says.

I'm Never Leaving (2020), by David "Mr StarCity" Wales. Photo: Courtesy of Destinee Ross-Sutton

Brothers, by Joshua Michael Adokuru. Photo: Courtesy of Destinee Ross-Sutton

Early influence: “Growing up in Harlem, I was immersed in culture through art, music, and dance. I found refuge in Black art and art in general. As I learned about the art world, I saw that the people who wanted to create had to arm themselves to have the career they deserve.”

Beach Time (2020) by Collins Obijiaku. Photo: COURTESY OF DESTINEE ROSS-SUTTON

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Up next: “I’m working on a show with two Nigerian artists, Johnson Eziefula and Adegboyega Adesina, to open in April. In June, I’m planning a solo show with the Afro-Brazilian artist Zéh Palito in the Hamptons.” In August, she’ll present the second edition of “Say It Loud” with Christie’s. ross-sutton.com

ROSS-SUTTON Gallery presents its inaugural exhibition, BLACK VOICES: Friend of My Mind in a 8250sqf Gallery Space in SoHo, New York Photo: Courtesy of Destinee Ross-Sutton

Khari Turner, I went to sleep last night, and arose with the dawn (2020) Photo: COURTESY OF DESTINEE ROSS-SUTTON

ROSS-SUTTON Gallery presents its inaugural exhibition, BLACK VOICES: Friend of My Mind in a 8250sqf Gallery Space in SoHo, New York Photo: Courtesy of Destinee Ross-Sutton

Click here to see the full list of “Creative Minds.”

A version of this article first appeared in print in our 2021 Spring Issue under the headline “Creative Minds.” Subscribe to the magazine.

Cover: Destinee Ross-Sutton at the Harlem studio of Khari Turner, one of the artists she represents at her gallery.
Photo: Khari Turner, Courtesy of Destinee Ross-Sutton

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