Hidden Talents: Where are Ohio’s Black Artists?
Art is a touchy subject for most due to its inability to please everyone. Even Michelangelo and Van Gogh faced criticism. And that is why I won’t attempt to tell you my favorite Ohio artists or where they are located, but will share some great places to view and buy art. While there are plenty of galleries featuring local artists across Ohio, art by African-Americans is more obscure, therefore, I have unearthed some hidden masterpieces.
When the Malcolm Brown Gallery in Cleveland–one of the oldest black-owned galleries in Ohio and the country–closed its doors this year, it left a great void in the world of black art. However, the Browns, including Malcolm, and Director Ernestine, still display at shows and sell their work online at www.malcolmbrowngallery.com.
The Hot Times Festival in Columbus is a community art and music festival that attracts local and national artists and art lovers. This year there will be music, a children’s parade and artists displaying their talents, September 9-11.
Also at The King Arts Complex is a permanent interactive installation by Columbus native Ron Anderson, called “Cargo: The Middle Passage,” which depicts the transfer of slaves from Africa to the Americas.
In Dayton, African-American artists united to form the African-American Visual Artists Guild (AAVAG) in 1992 where aspiring black artists share their passion, ideas and creativity for the arts. One of the founders of the AAVAG, Willis “Bing” Davis, has pieces that are exhibited in local, national, and global galleries. He opened the Davis Art Studio and EbonNia Gallery in 1998 in the historic Wright-Dunbar Business District of Dayton.
If you know of any local artists, or art shows that are occurring around Ohio, let me know below. Also, check out www.artsinohio.com for more information.