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Antioch Exhibition Honors Black Experience

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Antioch College’s Herndon Gallery is alive with visual representations of Black experiences and creativity.

In “Black History: A Work in Progress,” a new exhibition on view through March 28, gallery visitors are invited to serve as witnesses and in turn celebrate the contributions and “constant influence” of Black lives in the United States as well as this specific area of the country.

The multimedia show features works from 20 sources, each having a tie to the college and/or local community, according to Michael Casselli, chair of Antioch’s arts division and Herndon Gallery’s interim creative director.

Casselli, who is white, described the exhibition as including “contributions from the Antioch community, contributions by organizations that are part of the community of Yellow Springs, contributions from scholars, visual artists, performance artists, musicians, students from the college to students from the schools in town.”

The exhibition’s featured artists cross generations and chosen forms of expression. A number of the participating artists are also known for creative pursuits beyond the visual realm, including musical, literary and theatrical arts.

John Sims, who graduated from Antioch in 1990 with a degree in mathematics, exhibits his math- and activism-informed art work in exhibition spaces across the country. A native of Detroit who most recently has been based in Florida, Sims was the founder in 1991 of Antioch’s African American Cultural Week, which eventually evolved into the longstanding African-American Cross-Cultural Works organization that hosted a blues festival in the village for more than 25 years.

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By Carol Simmons.

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