The Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago presents multi-disciplinary works by Douglas R. Ewart, a composer, musician and sculptor, and figurative paintings by Raven Smith at EXPO Chicago from April 7-10. Both artists draw on their experiences and perspectives as Black artists to create work that is universal in emotion and reach.
Ewart was born in Jamaica. His wide-ranging work has been inextricably associated with Jamaican culture, history, politics and the land itself. Smith’s work speaks to pauses in our lives – whether immersed in pleasant distractions or feeling in limbo. She also explores the toll inflicted by being perceived as different.
Ewart and Smith have both exhibited in MSI’s Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition, held annually since 1970. Established in collaboration with the local community, Black Creativity provides a democratic opportunity for Black artists to participate in cultural, political and social discourse. Emerging artists who would go on to renown, such as Hebru Brantley and Amanda Williams, found support and encouragement here early in their careers while significant figures such as Ralph Arnold, Hamza Walker and Naomi Beckwith have served as jurors. Today, Black Creativity is the longest-running exhibition focused on Black artists in the nation.