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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Rochleigh Z. Wholfe awarded first place in Transforming Identity

Badc's Rochleigh Z. Wholfe was awarded first place in Transforming Identity, the Women's Caucus for the Arts, Annual Regional Juried Show. The show presented at the Third Floor Gallery in St. Louis, Missouri was juried by Evelyn Astegno from Venice, Italy and runs from December 1-31, 2006.

The prize winning image " The Transformation of Delia: A Slave Girl"

Artist Statement
My artwork is a catalyst for personal, social and spiritual transformation. The intent is to invoke critical thinking regarding the subject matter. The creative expressions are birthed from deep-rooted social, cultural, spiritual, and personal experiences. Each artistic venue teaches me lessons in respect, love, integrity, courage and holding power for myself and for silent voices. Every new work is a sacred magical seed, a meditation that sprouts in the minds of those receptive to its message.

I am both a visual and performance artist. I am a griot, telling the stories of the challenges and triumphs of the human spirit, especially the spirit of women. When I work with paints, colored pencils, textiles, gourds and found objects, I am transported to a realm where I create from soul knowledge and heart wisdom. My spirit guides me to create that which I need to birth for myself and for others. My motto is, I offer the gifts of my hands and talents on the altar of human service.

The Transformation of Delia
The Transformation of Delia is telling a story about healing, victory, and courage. A story of a broken woman who moved from powerlessness to regality, beauty and empowerment. Through the strength, blessings, love and power of the Ancestors she overcame. I used canvas sheets to paint her before and after images. Then I surrounded both paintings of her with antique ritual Kuba Cloth (Cloth was actually used in rituals of Shoowa Tribal Women). Nigerian woven panels and mud cloth was used to frame the images and give a nice contrast. Purple tie-dye (20 Yrs old) was added to show regality and high spiritual meaning. Antique clay beads (1000-10,000 years old) from an excavation in Mali are strategically sewn around the top of each image. Cowry shells, dragonflies, crystals and feathers are used to represent the support of the natural elements to assist in her healing. The figure in the center is the spirit of the ancestor who performed the healing ritual. There are many other hidden meanings in the piece that I leave to the observer to discover.

From the Juror

The opening was very nice and everybody complimented the setting and the high quality of the artwork. It was pretty difficult to chose the 5 winners, but I had to decide... at the end somebody even asked me to judge again... I tried to choose some pieces that had both aesthetical and conceptual qualities. Compliments to you! It was a pleasure giving you the first prize. As I told you, with the virtual eyes of a "juror", not artist (who might see and be inspired also by unexpected and personal details and impressions, they don't need to be the highest quality) I tried to give priority to some artworks with a strong concept and a good aesthetical quality, more or less, at the same time. Some other artworks had an interesting concept basically, but in my opinion could have been developed a little more or lacked some "cure" in crafting, some others looked very good but had a vague concept. Your piece is strong at any level in my opinion. From the composition and the crafting, to the cultural-historical meaning that appear spontaneously, to the artistic references.

Evelyn Astegno

For more on Rochleigh see:

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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Deborah Shedrick's Introspections at B. Smith's

By: Sharon Burton

On Monday, November 27, 2006 , Anacostia Fine Art and Authentic Art Consulting co-hosted a wonderful reception featuring new paintings by renowned artist, Deborah Shedrick. Her new paintings are featured in a unique exhibition, entitled Introspections, at B. Smiths Restaurant at Union Station in Washington, DC.

A mix of artists, art enthusiasts and new collectors came out to meet Ms. Shedrick and view her awesome work. In addition to the large, colorful paintings that adorned the walls of the Cabinet Room of the restaurant, a number of smaller pieces on canvas featuring mixed media works were also available for sale.

Deborah will also be among the Black Artists of DC who will exhibit work during the Art Basel Miami Beach.

Don't miss the opportunity to stop by B. Smiths and view Deborah's fabulous work in person. These works are available for sale through late December. Please contact Camille Mosley-Pasley for more information at (202) 581-4114 or by email:

All content © 2006 Black Artists of DC all rights reserved.
For permission to reproduce contact:

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

BADC Signature Portfolios Available

Support Black Artists of DC (BADC) as we become part of one of the first groups of African-American artists to show at the world-renowned Art Basel Miami Beach international arts show.

As a fund raiser to support these efforts, BADC is offering collector’s portfolios. Each portfolio contains 5 limited edition, museum quality prints. The prints, in editions of 20, are produced with archival materials, printed on 13” x 19” paper suitable for framing and are signed and numbered by the artist.

Each portfolio is presented in an archival presentation box, along with artist statements from each artist.

Purchase a BADC signature portfolio at special holiday pricing through December 31, 2006 for $1000 each. Individual prints may also be purchased for $300 each now through December 31, 2006. After January 1, 2007, portfolios will be available for $ 1250 and individual prints will priced at $ 375 each.

To view portfolios and images, visit: or

For sales information, please contact:

Camille Mosley-Pasley at (202) 581-4114

All content © 2006 Black Artists of DC all rights reserved.
For permission to reproduce contact:

Sunday, December 03, 2006

What is an artist?

What is an artist? I don’t know. I do know the question is right up there with, “What is God?” An artist sees and too often feels a little more than most of us and that can take its toll. Many have fallen because they could not reconcile their view of reality with the world‘s view. Remember when you were a kid? Everyone praised your work and said, “You’re going to be an artist” and you were so proud, but can you remember how you felt? Not just the pride, can you remember the first time you felt the creative spirit, the fire that burned within?

It’s difficult to explain to folks that you must create, you have no choice. You must create in anyway possible with whatever you have. Somebody somewhere had to decide that you could make a picture out of macaroni. It may seem trite and childish but someone had that idea - an artist. It’s no different from the first caveman - and why not cavewoman? - picking up a piece of burnt wood and making the first drawing on the rock wall.

Who are we? What are we? Why do we have these visions? Maybe the easiest answer is not to answer but to keep on creating. I remember as a child being enthralled by colors, smells, textures and lights. I loved black velvet. Today with all of the cheap imports in the stores many young people have never seen really good fabric. But, back-in-the-day, velvet, wool and silk were luxurious items and you could see and feel their quality. My mother would take my sister and me “downtown” to see the Christmas window displays. The stores competed to create the most elaborate holiday theme. Do you remember the thousands of Starlings that flew from building to building at dusk, singing and chirping as they flew in the evening sky and the thousands of butterflies during the day and fireflies at night?; what a wondrous delight for a child. Do you realize how much beauty has been taken from our daily lives and how art is underfunded in our schools? Art is also a struggle. It is a fight to keep beauty in the world and we are its foot soldiers.

We are often called strange, weird “out there” don’t take it lying down. You help the world to see. You not only create but continue the line of creation from the beginning of time and often unearth the ugly in the world to make us appreciate beauty even more. Oh, and by the way, artists are not necessarily creampuffs. Quite a few of us have been known to be militant in our art and many a conquering general was also a calligrapher, painter or poet. You don’t need to define yourself to anyone. The Creator didn’t put you here by mistake. That power is in you, use it!

Daniel T. Brooking


All content © 2006 Black Artists of DC all rights reserved.
For permission to reproduce contact: