Harlem Fine Arts Show hits the Chi

Harlem Fine Arts Show hits the Chi

Raymond Thomas-RosaResist What If Mona Lisa Were Black by Gerald Griffin

The Harlem Fine Arts Show (HFAS) will be at The Merchandise Mart in Chicago from October 30 to November 2, 2014 showcasing the works of dozens of established and emerging African-American artists, including artists from Chicago. The HFAS, held annually in New York City since 2010, has attracted more than 50,000 visitors and accounted for millions of dollars in art sales since its inception.  This year, the show also was presented in Atlanta and on Martha’s Vineyard.

The Chicago show will kick off with an Opening Night Reception on Thursday, October 30, at The Merchandise Mart at 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza.  The Opening Reception will benefit two legendary Chicago cultural institutions, The DuSable Museum of African American History and the South Side Community Art Center (SSCAC), which will celebrate its 75th Anniversary in 2015.  A “Salute to African Americans in Finance” will be presented, and publishers of major African American Chicago newspapers will be honored during this event.  The reception will feature live jazz music, hors d’oeuvres and beverages, in addition to providing a great opportunity to be among the first to view the show. Tickets for the HFAS Chicago Opening Night Reception are $150.

“We are excited to bring the Harlem Fine Arts Show to Chicago, one of the country’s most vibrant art centers,” says Dion Clarke, who founded the HFAS in 2009.  “And we are pleased to partner with the South Side Community Art Center and The DuSable Museum as beneficiaries of the Opening Night Reception.  Both are incredible cultural institutions with a mission that is closely aligned with that of the HFAS – to support and promote the work of talented African American and other artists of the African Diaspora.”

Among the Chicago artists participating in the Harlem Fine Arts Show Chicago are:

Gerald Griffin, a lauded Chicago artist who owns Griffin Fine Art & Interior Design, has been featured in Chicago press as well as the New York Times. Griffin has exhibited at Art Basil in Miami several times, Joyce Gordon Gallery in Oakland, The National Black Fine Arts Show in New York, October Gallery in Philadelphia, the Studio Museum of Harlem, The DuSable Museum in Chicago, and the Columbus Museum of Art, among other showcases.

Raymond Thomas, the award-winning, cutting-edge Chicago artist, currently is featured in a solo exhibition at Blanc Gallery Chicago that was inspired by the recent tragic events in Ferguson, Mo. In addition, Thomas’s work is on display at Utopic through December and he will be honored by the AFRICAN AMERICAN ARTS ALLIANCE at its 14th Annual Black Excellence Awards Ceremony & Gala on October 27, 2014.  Thomas won best of show 1st prize at the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry’s 2013 Black Creativity juried art exhibition and is the recipient of a 2014 IPA grant from the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs. Thomas is a graduate of the prestigious School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Joyce Owens’ “Black Desire In Practice” exhibit is now at the South Side Community Art Center.  The Yale art school alum and art professor at Chicago State University has curated numerous art shows, including several for the Chicago Department of Culture Affairs. And her insight is often sought by prestigious institutions such as the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and The Carver Museum in Austin, Texas. Owens has been on the Advisory Committee of Chicago Artists Month for more than 10 years.  Owens work is currently on exhibit at the South Side Community Art Center.

Louise Cutler is a painter, writer and performance artist who grew up in Chicago and studied at Malcolm X College and the University of Illinois Chicago. Her artwork has been shown at The DuSable Museum of African American History, The Museum of Science and Industry and throughout Illinois, New York, Atlanta, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and several venues throughout Colorado. Her paintings have also graced the covers of business brochures, calendars, and directories.  She has won numerous competitions, awards and grants and has been featured in several newspapers throughout the Chicago-land area and Colorado Springs.

Kevin A. ‘WAK’ Williams, perhaps the best-selling African American artist in the print market, grew up in Chicago.  His art is popular in homes of celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey and the late Bernie Mac, as well as small businesses, corporate offices and women’s spas and salons. His original and lithograph artwork hangs from coast to coast.  William’s art has been showcased on television shows such as “Law and Order” and “Soul Food.” http://www.wak-art.com/artist.htm

Art Dealer Danny Jenkins, a native of Chicago and Gary, will host his WaterKolours Gallery (based in Memphis) at The Harlem fine Arts Show.

Friday, October 31, is designated as HFAS Youth Empowerment Day (10 am to 3 pm), and all school children and college students are invited to attend free of charge. It will be a wonderful opportunity for young people to meet and interact with accomplished artists.

On Saturday, November 1, the HFAS will present The Winston and Carolyn Lowe Art Lecture Series that fosters the HFAS commitment to nurturing the ongoing development of collectors, scholars, appraisers and artists.  It will be a relaxed, interactive discussion that will feature nationally renown Black artists sharing insight on these and other aspects of the art world. The participating audience will have an opportunity to meet the artists and ask questions.

Sunday, November 2, the final day of the Harlem Fine Arts Show Chicago, will feature an Art Jazz Brunch with live music. Those attending will have an opportunity to enjoy a delicious Sunday brunch against a backdrop of incredible artwork and live music.  It will be a great way to spend Sunday afternoon with family and friends after enjoying uplifting church services. (Children are welcomed and those age 12 and younger are admitted free.)

For tickets and other information about The Harlem Fine Arts show, visit www.hfas.org


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