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June 2, 2020

Following the recent horrific, painful, and heartbreaking events we have seen unfold in America, we want to reaffirm Sotheby’s Institute of Art’s unwavering commitment to racial justice, to equal rights for all, and to our Institute’s policy of diversity and inclusion:

Sotheby’s Institute of Art welcomes and strives for diversity—including but not limited to race, class, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic background—in our student body, faculty, and staff in order to foster an inclusive educational community with a wealth of perspectives and experiences, and to cultivate a multi-faceted, global professional network that will better serve our students and alumni as cultural stewards and international art market leaders.

We believe all peoples and cultures contribute to enriching our learning environment and to positively impacting art, culture, commerce, and society at large. To quote Michelle Obama, “The arts and humanities define who we are as a people. That is their power--to remind us of what we each have to offer, and what we all have in common. To help us understand our history and imagine our future. To give us hope in the moments of struggle and to bring us together when nothing else will.”

Education is a powerful antidote to ignorance, and art is a potent catalyst for change. As an institution situated in both of these fields, we are committed to ways we can listen, learn, and elevate the voices of those who know the experience of injustice firsthand through teaching, research, publication, exhibition, and discussion.

While we operate in a global art world, our campuses are physically rooted in New York City and London, which are places that have always been sites for activism, protest, and impassioned calls for change. This is a part of who we are as an organization and we support those in these cities, and around the world, who peacefully demonstrate and protest against the unequal treatment of people of color. We must collectively work together to stop acts of hatred and to end injustice. We want to be a part of that work in a way that respects all of our students, alumni, faculty, and staff.

Thank you for being a united and supportive community committed to diversity and inclusivity. Please continue to take care of yourselves and each other.

In solidarity and peace,
Sotheby's Institute of Art