As an artist I was educated to believe that any piece of artwork should be created to “speak” to the viewer in every visual sense of the word! The people, places and events of the Civil Rights Movement, the non-violent nature of the 1950’s and 1960’s, all led me to believe that there was a holy spirit, a sacred dimension to this movement. In a period of horrific racism in this country, the people demonstrating for their constitutional rights remained non-violent.Read full artist statement
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Fannie Lou Hamer, born in 1917, was the granddaughter of a Mississippi slave and the youngest of 20 children. At the age of 6 she worked as a sharecropper in the fields with her parents. She was forced to drop out of school in the 6th grade to work full time to help support her family.
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Jimmie Lee Jackson was born in Marion, Alabama in 1938. He was a farm laborer and a deacon in his Baptist Church. He was also one of the little known heroes of the Civil Rights movement.According to some, “without Jimmie Lee Jackson, there would not have been a march from Selma to Montgomery.”
The Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery came to public attention again when he gave the eulogy at Coretta Scott King’s funeral in 2006 and more recently when he delivered the benediction at Barack Obama’s Inauguration, January 20, 2009. However, Lowery has never been far from the public eye as he has been a civil rights activist since the early 1950’s.
Rosa Parks (2/4/13 – 10/24/05) was a civil rights activist whom the U.S. Congress called “The Mother of the Modern-Day Civil Rights Movement”. It was on December 1, 1955 in Montgomery, Alabama when Mrs. Parks was arrested for violating the law by refusing to give up her seat on a public bus for a white man.