The Rapidian

ArtPrize winner curates new artist collective exhibit at Harris Building

Monroe "Aki" O'Bryant, 2015 ArtPrize 2D Juried Award Winner, and other area artists of color present a new exhibition, "Lemonpepper" March 25-April 9, 2016.
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The Artifacts GR, a new artist collective in Grand Rapids will be displaying it's first collection at the historical Harris Buildling beginning March 25, 2016.  The exhibit, Lemonpepper, will feature over 25 works in an array of styles and mediums such as oil, acrylic, photography, collage, mixed media, and pastel. The exhibitors include curator Monroe Akibang O’Bryant, Gil Horne Jr, Lester White, Brian Howland, Renato Pecina Jr, Chakila Hoskins, Piper Adonya Fields, Toni Waddell, Caira Leisha and James Curtis.

Monroe "Aki" O'Bryant, 2015 ArtPrize 2D Juried Winner for his photograph series, "Realistic Neglects" and curator of the exhibit noted, "Ever since winning ArtPrize, I have had numerous opportunites for touring, and discussing the series. I never knew that it would have led me to being head curator at the Historical Harris building for the Lemonpepper exhibit." 

O'Bryant runs A Fearless Brother Project, a photography, videography, and post production company. "After Shawn Micheal Warren and I received our awards, we met with other artists of color and decided together to create an art collective of raw talents. Hence, The Artifacts Gr was born. We all are like superheros, each of us are powerful in our own right. Marvel has the Avengers, DC has the Justice League, and now Grand rapids has the Artifacts Gr."

When asked where the show's name comes from, O'Bryant laughs and says, "My crew and I sat down, thinking of what to call the exhibit and the ancestors told me Lemonpepper! Lemonpepper means 'tis the season for some new seasoning in regards of art work. It's an enhanced artist collective, where we bring back viewers' audience relationship in the world of art"

O'Bryant further expands on the collectives' larger aspirations and dreams for the greater Grand Rapids area, "Our mission is to reintroduce art to children, and teaching them tools to be creative. We want to spark their inner spirit, of those whose willing to learn, and giving them options to vent.  To me, art is therapeutic-stories, and abstract artifacts purged from the soul to canvas. One of my personal goals is to bring identification of the arts back to the children in the inner city of Grand Rapids and beyond. The children need someone to look up to. Artifacts to the rescue!"

"Lemonpepper" will exhibit from March 25 - April 9, 2016. Opening night, March 25, 2016, will include performances from area musicians and poets. It begins at 7 p.m. and includes a $10 cover charge. The Harris Building is located at 111 Division Avenue S.



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