Category Archives: Artists in the News

Remembering Black Wall Street

Remembering Black Wall Street

Around the early 1900s Black Wall Street was an African American self contained town that flourished. They built black Wall Street in Tulsa, Oklahoma, these very rich African Americans controlled all the Commerce within the triangle barrier of Greenwood Archer and Pine (AKA GAP).

After, the Civil War ended over 50 African American townships were being established in Oklahoma between 1865 and 1920. The Indian territories were one of the safest places for African Americans to grow and thrive.

They founded black Wall Street in 1906 with the slogan:

“Built for black people by black people”

You could find people wearing the nicest clothes, luxurious shops, doctors’ offices, law offices, thriving construction, hospitals, public transportation, hotels, banks, theater houses and all the newest cars moving about the city. African-Americans controlled and operated everything within the city.

They spent all money earned from working abroad in the community over and over. Historians have noted that money would change hands 19 times before it left the community.

The residents of Black Wall Street, we’re living an upscale lifestyle. This upscale lifestyle attracted attention of white people fast and made them jealous because of their less prosperous lives and disrupting the status quo.

The financial power of Black Wall Street was being felt all across America and you could feel the movement growing in power. African American people were  striving to do better for themselves, just as Booker T. Washington suggested.

The goal was to move toward independence, to have “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness“ as Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence.

Jealousy and envy fueled the minds of white people, KLAN members, racist and the federal government. The Massacre of Black Wall Street began on May 31st, 1921, and lasted two horrifying days.

It began after 19-year-old African American shoe shiner Dickie Rollin was accused of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old white elevator operator named Sarah Page. As tensions escalated, small groups of African-American men took up arms for protection. But they were no match for what was coming.

Through a highly orchestrated attack, they cut the city off from the outside world and they blocked all escape routes.

Leaving the residents in the hands of racist madmen. They set over 40 blocks of the city on fire, rapeing women, torturing men and killing babies and kids. A Mob of 1,700 racist infested the city with no recourse or mercy? To destroy all evidence of the massacre, the US government targeted the city for destruction with the dropping of a bomb. 

The Tulsa Massacre left hundreds of African American residents dead and thousands of homes and businesses looted and burning. 

Tulsa’s Black Wall Street

After the massacre survivors recount, trains were being loaded with bodies and then dumped off the Arkansas River bridges and others were thrown in mass grave pits.

They rebuilt the city over the ashes, and African-Americans found themselves in poverty and in debt as the city moved into modern times.

Today the story of Black Wall Street is a mere whisper in modern time. But today, in this painting We Remember Black Wall Street. What they achieved and the tragic lessons they taught us.

Vincent Keele and the Black Wall Street Painting


Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center Exhibit

I just returned from Wilberforce, Ohio where my art is being featured at the Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center, and well, I won’t sugar coat it. I met some super cool people, won an award and had a wonderful time sharing my art with the people of Ohio.

  This painting: Mamma Who Is That… that Museum Director Wash and I are standing in front of, shows how our elders used everyday things to past on education to the youth. In a lot of families, it is the grandmother that ends up nurturing the youth. Our little high fashion granny is taking her son to the museum to teach about former slave Peter Gordon. He was the first person to show the atrocities and brutality of the South to the north after he escaped from a plantation in Mississippi in the mid-1800s. Instead of going to sit and hide he chose to do his part to fight for freedom and justice for others. He helped free many slaves, educated aristocratic and political people alike on the horrible treatments of abducted prisoners on the plantation. 

The Art of Soul exhibition will be running till March 2020.


The Thomas African Art Collection by Vincent Keele

The Thomas African Art Collection

The Thomas African Art Collection

The Thomas African Art Collection by Vincent Keele

Thomas Collaction #4

The Thomas collection is a journey into the African culture through the grand collection of historian and fellow artist Mr. Ernest Thomas. I was moved to create the this body of work from the deep passion and education presented to me from Mr. Thomas. The talks I had with him about Africa and the artifacts he has in his collection, made a profound imprint on me and thrust me into creation mode. I must say, I have never been moved as much about African art as when I was talking to Mr. Thomas. This body of work is my vision and representation of the artifacts that I was introduced to. Today I bring you a new view of the African cultural mask in a rich vibrant style that will warm you’re heart and excite you’re mind.

My friends I present to you The Thomas African Art Collection by artist Vincent Keele!!!

 


Afro Vibes Oil Painting Black Art on Canvas

Artist Vincent Keele Featured at Onyx Fine Art Gallery

Artist Vincent Keele Featured at Onyx Fine Art Gallery

Afro Vibes Oil Painting Black Art on Canvas

Vincent Keele is currently the featured artist at the Onyx Gallery in Belltown, Seattle. Make sure to drop in and see his wonderful artwork.

How Vincent thinks about the art he creates:

“When starting a new painting I always start with learning. Learning about who and what I have in mind. I want to connect with the subject first and understand who or what that thing is all about, get in deep!!! I really want to see why I’m attracted to the person or place. For the most part, I want the viewer to see themselves or people they know in the paintings. It’s all about the connection and bringing out emotions through the use of what I call Dramatic Emotionalism. This kind of connection allows the viewers to go deep into the painting and want to know the story of that person or that place and in some cases, provide the frame work for them to formulate their own story.” -Vincent Keele

See more of  Vincent Keele’s paintings at: Vincent Keele Fine Art


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