Opening Reception: January 10th, 6-8pm
Exhibition Dates: January 10th to February 28th, 2014
Download: EbonyCreationsWebPoster_2014-01-05

NPR Article

Edwardsville Intelligencer Article

The new exhibit at the Edwardsville Arts Center “Ebony Creations” is a collaborative effort with the Portfolio Gallery in St. Louis and EAC. This show will feature the work of  30 artists represented by the Portfolio Gallery and will include paintings, photos, textiles, and sculpture. This exhibit will give patrons of the Arts Center an opportunity to view a collection of work from professional artists from the St. Louis area and beyond. The opening reception is free and open to the public, refreshments will be provided and entertainment will include Paul Herbert Pitts and Stan Meeks.

Sponsors: Dr. Ed and Barbara Hightower; Jennifer Hightower, JD; Lincoln School Alumni Foundation; Al and Joan Wentz; Paul and Paula Pitts; The Hudlin Family in Memory of Russell Hudlin, Edwardsville Branch of the NAACP.

DeToye Student Gallery: Lincoln Middle School will be exhibiting work along with featured works from the middle school that are responses to the show in the Main Gallery “Ebony Creations.”

Curatorial Statement

The artist whose art appears in “Ebony Creations” represents a small portion of the Illinois, Missouri and regional artist on the scene today. The exhibited art shows a variety of styles and forms which are connected by a common heritage. Many artists have experienced similar lifestyles and cultural patterns which in part, explains the similarity and content in their art. The art demonstrates commonality and highly individualized styles, which make up the artistic range of African American artist throughout the nation.

Although it has been assumed by many that the visual arts are appreciated only by the broader society, this exhibition reveals how active African American artist are in the creative process and the education and development of art within their communities. As in other fields, lack of recognition of the “Black Artist” has resulted in the shortsightedness of art historians who in general have defined the visual arts as a mainstream phenomenon, of the broader artistic community.

We hope that the art exhibited here will stimulate the viewer to investigate further, the experiences, dreams, and realities of the “Black Artist”. We hope that other artists, who are not included in this exhibition, will join us in the next exhibit as we strive to answer the question ‘What is Black Art?” in the same way we have approached the definition of Asian art, Pre-Columbian art, and Eskimo art.

Langston Hughes, poet laureate of “Black America, spoke to this issue in: “Notes on Commercial Theater”

“Someday somebody will stand up and talk about and write about me. Black and beautiful, and sing about me and put on plays about me! I reckon it’ll be me myself. Yes, it’ll be me”

Many visual artists have begun to “sing” of themselves. Others will do so later. This is only the beginning. I hope you will “sing” with us and enjoy this exhibition: “Ebony Creations”

Robert A. Powell