Roads To Equality Commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Freedom Rides

Sculptor and Guest Curator Vinnie Bagwell

Commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Freedom Rides of 1961. Reflecting on Freedom, Democracy, and Equality in America.

I entered the Barbara Walter’s Gallery located in the Heimbold Visual Arts Center and was met face to face with a sea of paintings with rich vibrant colors and richly detailed sculptures. “Roads to Equality” was well attended with attendees spilling out into the lobby area. Opening night was a triumph!

Paintings and sculptures embraced me, all demanding my attention and I gave it willingly. Each painting and sculpture held me, demanding that I spend time and listen to its story.  A journey of a people. Turning around there standing before me was  Sculptor Vinnie. Bagwell. I walked over and introduced myself. She walked with me over to her sculptures and formally introduced. Here before me were  the sculptures I had admired in photographs. I am reminded of words I often shared on one of the popular sites. Dearest Vinnie, your hands are God’s blessings to the world. Your sculptures make the angels in heaven cry with joy and wonder.

Vinnie Bagwell, Guest Curator “Commemorating the Freedom Riders” in her own words.

 The commitment, spirit, and creative energy embodied in the day-to-day battles to abolish the racist institution of segregation in our country represents one of the finest chapters in our nation’s history. While the story of the details has been told many times and the struggle has moved from the front pages of newspapers and magazines and from the streets and courtroom, the bravery and quiet heroes of social change continue to provide us with inspiration and hope for the future. Now, on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the ordinance that overturned Jim Crow in the United States, the unique contribution of artists will interpret the meaning of liberty, democracy, and freedom in America.

The artists in this exhibition offer more than simple, visual accounts of the struggle for civil rights. Their work is a means by which to sharpen memories, to revisit some of the most meaningful and rewarding moments in American history. Vivid images are presented that will stimulate dialogue among those who lived through the 1960s and help enlighten a younger generation eager to learn about the struggle to overthrow segregation.
Strength and knowledge came to the many who fought in the struggle for civil rights through non-violent participation in events that held unknown rewards and consequences. All of us must hope and pray that the lessons learned and the lives lost during the years of the civil-rights movement will be remembered and honored to infinity”.

The artists works on exhibition in “Roads To Equality” are Vinnie Bagwell, Romare Bearden(1911-1988), Chester Bloom(1918-1989), Leroy Campbell, Jef Campion, Jacob Lawrence(1917-2000), Algernon Miller, Charly Palmer, Barbara Segal, WAK(Kevin A. Williams) and Gilbert Young. “Roads To Equality” will be on exhibit until November 30, 2011.
11/2/11 original posting.

©Lorraine Currelley and The Currelley Literary Journal 2011. Unauthorized duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

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