Black Wall Street – A Case for Reparations – The Bridge Art Gallery

Join artist Ajamu Kojo, curators Cheryl & Christopher Mack, Nimbus Artistic Director Samuel Pott, and a group of enthusiastic art lovers for the opening of Black Wall Street. The event is open to the public with wine, soft drinks and hors d’oeuvres served. Plus: Special Guest Jason Samuels Smith, virtuoso tap dancer performs an improvisational set. And the Nimbus Arts Center announces Fall Season events and performances! Don’t miss it!

7:45 – 10pm – Public Reception

Ajamu Kojo trained as a filmmaker, graduating from Howard University’s storied program, and developed his studio practice as a painter while pursuing a professional career as a scenic artist in the film & television industry. This background feels significant to the paintings that have emerged in the last few years. His recent body of work displays an attention to the past enlivened by a vision that is cinematic in scope, creating a kind of painted moving picture. This power is evidenced in the celebrated series “Black Wall Street,” a series of portraits that seems descended from the tradition of history painting – the genre itself was something like the cinema of its time. Upon painstakingly prepared canvases, Ajamu collapses past and present, and through these invites viewers to witness an embodied futurity, in which the easy smiles and tender proximity of his sitters – stand ins for survivors of the Greenwood massacre – render wholeness and persistence to what has been lost. The affective claim of these paintings proposes that a destroyed future is still in reach, despite the specter of destruction and oblivion seeping from beyond the frame, figured by the drip of black paint.