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African diaspora art collector recognized for decades of collecting

Patric McCoy

Delta Sigma Theta Chicago Alumnae Chapter presented its annual Gallery D’Estee. Appropriately themed, “Cultural Connections,” this year’s honoree was Patric McCoy, president of Diasporal Rhythms. McCoy was recognized for his many years of service as art patron and collector of art from the African Diaspora. McCoy has been collecting contemporary African American art for 46 years and has a varied collection of over 1,300 pieces of fine art.

What is Diasporal Rhythms’ mission?
The mission of Diasporal Rhythms is to grow a group of passionate art collectors that are engaged in collecting contemporary art of the African diaspora. We are looking for at people to self-identify as collectors of artists that are alive and of African or African American descent. We want to get more people involved in collecting that type of work and appreciating that work.

What was it like being honored by the Chicago Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta?
It is truly an honor. This a very important point in our visual arts culture when a social organization steps up and becomes a part of the process of promoting the arts culture in the community and the culture itself. For them to give me the honor is a real honor because I see them as doing something very special.

Are there specific elements you look for when considering artwork for your collection?
There are many themes that I recognize and are attracted to. However, I am only interested in collecting living artists. I find I select art work that speaks to our people or to my life. It is about the whole development of us as a people. I am also looking for quality. Does the artist, in whatever technique they are using, exhibit some kind of excellence in the technique and not slap something together and think we are going to like it? When I get to that point, I want them to go to the next level; I want them to show me that they are practiced and have a very high standard for what they are doing and it shows up in their work.

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