Mr. Speaker, I rise today in celebration of National Black History Month to recognize the prestigious Third Annual 2012 Harlem Fine Arts Show at Harlem's historic cathedral, The Riverside Church. The Harlem Fine Arts Show, HFAS, is one of the nation's largest and most prominent collections of works, paintings, photographs and sculptures by both established and emerging African American artists from around the world. The HFAS always takes place during National Black History Month and this year's exhibition kicked-off with a Diversity Prep Youth Day/Fine Arts Exhibit and Opening Preview Reception on Friday, February 3, with exhibitions on Saturday, February 4 and Sunday, February 5.
Created by Dion Clarke, the Harlem Fine Arts Show was built upon the tradition of the long-established Black Fine Arts Show, which for fourteen years was the premiere show for exhibiting modern and contemporary art and highlighting some of the most diverse and exciting contemporary popular art. As stated by Mr. Clark. ``Our event is one of the largest collections of African American art ever assembled for a fine arts show, representing more than 100 artists--a dramatic reminder during Black History Month of the tremendous contribution of African and Caribbean American artists to the global fine arts landscape.''
This year's theme, ``A Global Celebration'' shines a spotlight on artists around the world. The HFAS will feature the art produced by African Americans within our community and from around the world illustrating shared ancestries, injustices, and shared pride. Our Afrocentric art provides a deep sense of connection between generations of Americans and events they may have only heard about. The art of our people demonstrates the struggle, the pain, and the hardships we have endured, and celebrates the joy, the accomplishments and achievements of our past, present and future.
The three day global celebration will showcase the explosion of culture that began with the Harlem Renaissance in the early nineteen hundreds and will include contemporary artist exhibitors and nationally renowned regional galleries. The Harlem Fine Arts Show is pleased to have John Martin, a seasoned exhibition designer of the JP Martin Group, bring together the artwork of some of the most accomplished and influential American artists of African and Hispanic descent.
The renowned photography of James Van Der Zee (June 29, 1886 May 15, 1983), a prominent documentarian of Harlem, New York from 1915 to 1960, will be among the featured artists who also include:
Herold Alvares, a Haitian artist born without arms due to a congenital birth defect who began painting at the age of eight, who teaches art to disabled children at St. Vincent's Center for Handicapped Children in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
Stacey Brown, a visual artist whose creations on glass are inspired by his background in graphic design, with flowing shapes and contours that express contemporary and edgy artistic style, whose work has garnered acclaim from the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Decor Magazine, and BET's hit reality show, College Hill.
Frank Frazier, a Harlem native whose art career spans over 50 years of perseverance and inspiration, whose genius works depict everything from antagonistic war to jovial jazz concerts.
George Nock, a self-taught artist and former running back with the New York Jets and Washington Redskins, who has distinguished himself among the greatest sculptors of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries through his highly original bronzes.
Kerream Jones, whose work possesses a multifaceted and timeless quality that has led this prolific artist to receive commissions from Verizon Wireless, Pepsi, Upscale Magazine, Atlanta Tribune: The Magazine, the City of Chicago, and various non-profit organizations.
Gwendolyn E. Redfern, a North Carolina native and multi-talented artist who expresses life experiences through her pottery, painting, and mixed media collages.
Najee Dorsey, Founder of Black Art in America and a mixed media artist whose work pays homage to a cast of colorful characters, folk legends and heroes, as well as critiquing aspects of contemporary times.
In accordance with HFAS's commitment to our young scholars, the show will host Diversity Prep Day to give students the opportunity to explore the visual arts, mingle with the artists, and participate in a Youth Information Fair by the show's sponsors and partners.
Mr. Speaker, let me congratulate along with Founder Dion Clark, this year's Mistress and Masters of Ceremony, Barbara Smith and Dan Gasby for your ongoing contributions to Black and American culture. On behalf of my colleagues and a very grateful nation and in celebration of National Black History Month I salute and recognize all of our participating Harlem and world renowned artists and exhibitors of the 2012 Harlem Fine Arts Show.
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