A Kaleidoscope of Black Art and History
February 3, 2017
Kaleidoscope, which means “diverse collection” is the name of the Black History Art Exhibition presented by Platt College San Diego in Mission Valley and Vista Public Libraries.
This vivid exhibition honors and explores the rich history, diversity, elegance, strength and essence of African American culture. Moreover, the exhibition highlights the struggles, accomplishments, and contributions of African American people.
Kaleidoscope is comprised by work of students and faculty from different backgrounds in an effort to design unity and express their appreciation for Black History Month. The artwork of Latino artists Dulce Ramos, Joana Ramirez, Gilberto Gonzalez, Angelica Ramirez, and Ismael Gutierrez, all of them students from Platt College San Diego School of Digital Media Design, features art pieces in graphic design, water color, ink, and photography methods.
Ramos, who created a kaleidoscopic portrait of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., says art serves as a window to the past, enabling people to appreciate the emotion of history without experiencing it.
“I chose Martin Luther King Jr. because his message of peace, working together and unity, inspires me”, mentioned Ramos in interview for La Prensa San Diego. “I grew up in Tijuana and my parents taught me since I was a little girl the importance of listening to people and their stories. When we first came here to live in San Diego, I didn’t know any English, and my neighbor, who was African American, didn’t care that we didn’t understand each other’s language; she and her family helped us a lot and I hold that to my heart.”
Joana Ramirez, who designed a vibrant Andy-Warhol inspired rendering of Malcolm X, says that the study and expression of African American history helped them connect more deeply to their Latino roots, as well to explore their creative expression of their understanding of history.
The show includes artistic representations of historic, political figures like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X and Michelle Obama; artists like Jean-Michel Basquiat, Jimi Hendrix, and Chaka Khan.
“I believe minorities should stick together and be united in these hard times,” expressed Ismael Gutierrez, a participating artist in the Kaleidoscope Art exhibition. Embracing diversity turns into the common denominator between the art statements and creative intentions from all the young artists.
“This might be the most diverse show we have ever created. There’s a bit of everything, from angels in watercolor to self-portraits in graphic art to gritty representations of street life in photography,” expressed Assistant Curator Bianca Reyes.
The show will be on display at the Mission Valley and Vista Public Libraries until March.