Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Black Magic: Live Art Museum







The Black Magic Live Art Museum took place on Friday March 3, 2017 at the DeLo Studios in Downtown Jacksonville.  The event was formed by Tiffney Funches, one of the organizers of isupport dreams inc., along with a few of her closest friends.

“2016 was a rough year for everyone in our circle and we wanted to find a way to deal with all of the emotions that came with the election, bombings, and police shootings.  We needed a way to express our hurt and frustrations.”

Funches says that this is exactly what she and her friends wanted.  They wanted the message to be loud and clear: Black Lives Matter, black art matters, black creativity matters…we matter.  She wanted those positive images to shine through and resonate in our hearts. 

The Black Magic Live Art Museum was a “collective effort” that her and a few friends decided to do in honor of their late friend and brother Jerry Brown.  Jerry Brown was shot and killed in January 2016 while sitting in a car outside of his Aunt’s house. See full story here.

Chelsey Pough, long time friend of Brown and co-owner of isupport dreams inc., performed a very moving poem she started writing one month after his death. Emotions ran high as Pough poured out her feelings of loss for her dear friend with a poem entitled, “Jerry”.

 “I just want the violence to end, admits Pough.”  “And hopefully my words touched someone to put their guns down.” Along with her poetry audience members got to witness a dance that reflected her poetry. 

Other works of art displayed that evening echoed Pough’s plea for violence to end against young black men.  The Black Lives Matter movement was visible in words, photographs, and symbolism. 
Along with poetry there was an array of local talent displayed. 
Visual artists consisted of: KiAndra Jones, Tatiana Kitchen, Christopher Clark, Alfonso Stacey, Walter Lewis, Corey, Phedre J. Delinois (Body Art Painter), Tasha Coney (dancer), Mike Robinson-DJ, and host (Ebony Payne).

Local visual artist Christopher Clark and his wife Kandice Clark were a Black power couple, dynamic team and a force to be reckoned with.  Clark’s art captures black expression in a sophisticated way.  His art entitled “Pray” features a young African American boy with a shirt on that reads “prey”.  His hair is gold and nappy.  Clark says that it represents “precious metal which is what we are.” 

Domo Haynes, a local fashion designer teamed up with iOne Fashion to present their latest collection.  The energy in room was magnetic.  There was art displayed throughout the entire building, and art being created as well.  

Local photographers came to show their support and be a part of the BMLAM as well.  Alfonso Stacey, Cheryl McCain displayed their talent of capturing the essence and beauty of black men, women and children.

Cheryl McCain brought with her, her muse for her latest collection.  She says that her style of photography includes allowing her clients to just be themselves and letting their inner beauty shine through. 

The location of the Black Magic Live Art Museum was carefully selected as well.  The Delo Studios used to be the Richmond Hotel, “one of a handful of historically significant buildings that survived the 1990’s demolition derby party held in Lavilla.”

Funches admits that its rich history played a key role in their selection process.  The RichmondHotel has featured some prominent African American artists such as, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, and
Billie Holiday.

“We’re proud and very humbled, says Funches.  We wanted to send out a message and that message is this: “Black people can celebrate black people.  This is who we are.  We are beautiful and we need to re-teach that to our people.”

To her friend and brother Jerry Brown, she says this: “We love you and miss you wholeheartedly.  Rest in heaven and keep singing for Jesus.”

*Special Mentions: Alexis Harley, Ashley Dickerson, Richard Brown, and JaVaris Robinson

Praise for Black Magic: Live Art Museum!!

- "Beautiful!  I love seeing different people's ideas coming to life.  They are all different but great."
   Keturiah Baker

- "Impressed! Proud. I admire how so many beautiful people came together with so many talents.           And I love how the city showed its support.
    Tammie Nelson


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