The property was deemed a national treasure last year, and now, blavity.com reports that a group of New York-based artist-owners, Adam Pendleton, Rashid Johnson, Ellen Gallagher and Julie Mehretu, will spearhead the project.
“We are committed to realizing the artist-owners’ dream of seeing this home preserved and reborn as an act of social justice and a tribute to Ms. Simone’s unapologetic pursuit of musical, personal and political freedom,” said Senior Field Officer for the National Trust, Tiffany Tolbert, in the group’s official statement.
The artists purchased the home in 2017 when it was in danger of being demolished. They partnered with the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s African-American Heritage Action Fund to save the historic landmark, restore it and repurpose it for future use, The New York Times reports.
Repairs, painting, siding and other minor aspects of restoration will begin in the coming months. In the meantime, Tolbert said they are in the process of choosing an architect to move the project forward as soon as early April.
The interior could be turned into a museum celebrating the soul singer but discussion are still ongoing.
In related news, “Nina Simone: Four Women,” a new music-filled play featuring many of her hits, made its regional premiere on the People’s Light theater in Pennsylvania on February 27 and runs through March 31.
As reported by Broadway World, the play opens on Simone the moment she learns four Black girls – Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson, and Carol Denise McNair – were killed in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama. The event shifted her career from nightclub singer to Civil Rights activist.