BLACK LIFE  AS SUBJECT MATTER II

Artists Statements

                                                         TITLE: “AYO'S CHAIR"

                                                              by James Pate

 


 

Media: Charcoal Drawing on Paper
Size:38″ x 50″ x 2” Framed
Hue: Black and White
Copyright 2021
Price: $5,000.00

 

 

Artist Statement:

                                                           
Although the medium I chose for the rendering is charcoal, the medium of the subject matter is wood. At its core this work is an interpersonal statement about hope, desire, and expectation. I generated this image after contemplating individuals and organizations that create places and spaces that nurture and advance the well-being of children. Their goodwill symbolizes the profound support that a child needs from a community and humanity at large. “Ayo’s Chair” is deliberately a masculine-driven opinion that points out the impact that adult males have on the development of young males.


It is my hope that when my own son encounters role models of the village, he will be seen as a work in process in need of their positive energy and guidance. In addition to the support I provide, I desire for other male figures—in particular—to share their love and knowledge to increase his chances of one day becoming a distributor of love and knowledge as well. I expect for the members of our local and global community to refrain from sabotaging, undermining, or deliberately derailing his efforts toward self-improvement, community building, and prosperity.


In this piece Ayo is representing every child as he reads a book while perched on a four-legged chair. Illustrated is a male representation carved into each leg of the chair. Together the figures lock arms to form a complete support system that can ensure a healthy outcome for the future. Composing this piece came with thoughts of an art production environment, where works of influence, persuasion, and seduction are brought to physical existences. As a summary for this piece, the shadows casting from the chair’s legs form the West African Adinkra symbol called Mframadan (x inside a square), which represents a structure built to withstand treacherous conditions.


                                                                                             

                                                                                         JAMES PATE

                                                TITLE: “MIDDLE SCHOOL REVOLT"

                                                                by James Pate

 


Media: Charcoal Drawing on Paper
Size:50″ x 38″ x 2” Framed
Hue: Black and White
Copyright 2021
Price: $5,000.00

 

 

Artist Statement:

                                                       
“Middle School Revolt” is a 50” x 38” charcoal drawing. The title is a double entendre between middle school and the Middle Passage; it speaks to the natural thirst for one to know their ancestry. The underlying thought behind this drawing is how long it can take many of us (i.e., African Americans) to reconnect to an extraordinary lineage that is powerfully fascinating and liberating.


To contradict this thought I imagined a middle school student in a classroom in the middle of learning about the Middle Passage. The student is holding a slave ship where a captives’ revolt is taking place. Witnessing the revolt quenches the student’s thirst for answers to questions such as, “Did the captives ever retaliate?” and “If so, were there any successful takeovers?” The background of this piece continues the theme of gaining knowledge of a people’s steadfast ability to overcome the bleakest of circumstances.

 


                                                                                               JAMES PATE