Killer Mike Joins Atlanta's High Museum Board, Talks Arts Education & Inclusivity

Killer Mike rapper on Atlanta Museum Board.jpg

Atlanta’s High Museum of Art has been unusually successful in attracting young people and people of color to the museum in recent years. Now, Killer Mike, the 43-year-old rapper, who is a committed activist and father of four, is the newest member appointed to the board

Killer Mike, whose given name is Michael Render, is known for hard-hitting, hip hop rhymes about income inequality, police brutality, and systemic racism, topics that also infuse his political commentary and activism. The rapper garnered headlines with Democratic progressives in 2016 with his embrace of Bernie Sanders. Render has become a sought-after contributor on the news and political panels, and a guest lecturer at some of America’s top colleges and universities with his articulated views on the intersection of art and culture.

Beyond the headlines, Killer Mike has deep roots in the visual arts (he turned down several fine art scholarships to pursue a career in music), his appointment to the board of Atlanta's major American museum is uncharted territory for the Atlanta native. Killer Mike is up for the challenge.

In a conversation with artnet News, the rapper outlined his goals to increase African American and working-class attendance at the High. Render also touched on the importance of arts education, the role of public schools, and the convergence of the art world and hip hop in recent years.."

 Kerry James Marshall’s  Past Times  (1997). Image courtesy of Sotheby’s.

Kerry James Marshall’s Past Times (1997). Image courtesy of Sotheby’s.