Art Works Blog

While working on her Master of Fine Arts in Painting at Howard University, Jessica Maria Hopkins received life-changing news. After a routine visit to the doctor’s office in 2011, she was diagnosed with cancer. Having to postpone her studies, with the support of her mother and her eight siblings,...
It would not be unfair to say composer Jeffrey Mumford has his head in the clouds. Since he was a child, Mumford has been fascinated with the patterns and variations of clouds and sunlight, which he transforms into compositions that are as textured, mesmerizing, and expansive as the natural world...
When José Olivarez walked into the Louder Than A Bomb youth poetry festival as a shy 15-year-old, he discovered an electric atmosphere filled with the rhythms of hip-hop music, young people rapping, people dancing, and the beats of someone’s drums. “I remember feeling, ‘Oh, my God. I've walked into...
"I think that the reason why art stays alive is that the artist grows. I mean the body doesn't stay the same; the brain doesn't stay the same. Your art can't stay the same." -- Sonia Sanchez
Filmmakers Rita Coburn-Whack and Bob Hercules knew only one thing for sure about one another when they first met: they both deeply admired the writer and activist Maya Angelou. They were also puzzled by the same thing: Why hadn't anyone yet made a documentary about the icon whose work had...
In James Weldon Johnson's famous poem "Lift Every Voice and Sing" —known colloquially as the black national anthem—the poet urges us to "Let our rejoicing rise/ High as the list’ning skies...." In the poems that follow poets lift their voices skyward in praise of notable figures in African-American...
"Hold fast to dreams/ For if dreams die/ Life is a broken-winged bird/ That cannot fly." — Langston Hughes "Cheap little rhymes/ A cheap little tune/ Are sometimes as dangerous/ As a sliver of the moon." — Langston Hughes "An artist must be free to choose what he does certainly, but he must also...
“I think there is no greater sort of envelope to talk about issues than the arts.” – Janet Langsam Since 1965, local arts agency ArtsWestchester has ensured “the availability, accessibility, and diversity of the arts,” as its mission statement reads, to artists and arts lovers alike. Based in White...
"I love language because when it succeeds, for me, it doesn't just tell me something. It enacts something. It creates something. And it goes both ways. Sometimes it's violent. Sometimes it hurts you. And sometimes it saves you." -- Claudia Rankine Did you know Claudia Rankine is one of our NEA Big...
Perhaps more than any other type of artist, the ballerina possesses a certain inexplicable mystique. The incredible grace and physicality required of ballet dancers makes them seem of another, more beautiful world. Misty Copeland is no exception. A soloist with New York’s American Ballet Theatre (...

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