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Black Artists in Austin

Supporting the local Black community is about so much more than just signing a couple of petitions or donating once to an organization. Yes, these actions are important, but there are other ways we can assist the community. Being that we are an arts publication, one of our favorite methods of advocating for a specific culture is through becoming well-versed in its art. Below, we have compiled a (non-exhaustive) list of local Black artists which includes a brief description of their work and links to their social media. In addition to uplifting these artists, we encourage you to support Six Square, Austin’s Black Cultural District which provides resources for local Black artists while preserving and celebrating the legacy of East Austin’s Black community.

Fine Artists & Photographers:

Adrian Armstrong

adrian armstrong

Study 02 – Ballpoint Pen and Acrylic on Paper, 22’’ x 30”, 2020

A photorealistic mixed media artist and printmaker originally from Omaha, Adrian seamlessly speaks to our times and to Black culture through his evocative works. He also creates music under the name NJUNE.

Aimee M. Everett

aimee everett

Serene – Acrylic, Copper Leaf, and Gold Leaf on Birchwood Panel, 14”, 2020

Aimee explores the unsaid and silence through her visual language, creating spaces for emotional encounters in her expressively minimalist paintings.

Alannah Tiller: Alilscribble

alannah tiller

With Love – print on cardstock, 8”x10”

Alannah seeks to understand everyday objects and people through the lens of her own experience and through pop culture. She amplifies the themes she explores through bold lines and bright colors.

Arielle Austin

arielle austin

Against The Tide – Oil on canvas, 10” x 10”

Experimenting with process, Arielle uses form, color and shape to explore the intimate relationship between subject and viewer.

BYDEE Art Gallery

bydee art

A Colorful House…is a Happy Home

Brian “Bydeeman” Joseph creates bright, colorful imagery surrounding the fictitious Bydee people whom he created in 1986. Bydee stands for “Bringing You Delightful Entertaining Experiences.”

Chacasso Art

chacasso art

It was All a Dream – print, 8.5” x 11”

Chacasso is a free spirit who lives by the mantra “attitude is everything.” His dynamic portraiture reflects the spirit of his subjects while being infused with whimsy.

Chris Rogers

chris rogers

Red Set – Acrylic, 12” x 24”

Drawing since he was a little boy, Chris investigates form through his gestural approach to mark-making. Pursuing an inherently collaborative art practice, Chris has worked with artists throughout the city to create public and private projects that reflect Austin’s vibrance.

Dawn Okoro

dawn okoro

Not a Punchline – Acrylic on canvas, 36” x 36”, 2016

Informed by art, fashion and photography, Dawn creates paintings that embody space, movement, form and color. Her work also critically examines the internal and external experiences that shape her everyday life.

Deborah Roberts

deborah roberts

Between Them – Mixed Media Collage on Paper, 80” x 61”, 2019

Critiquing racialized notions of “ideal beauty,” Deborah creates a dialogue in her work between notions of dignity, consumption, inclusion, and subjectivity.

DHILLS Photography

dwayne hills

Untitled – photograph

A multi-disciplinary creative, Dwayne works with clients large and small to capture the essence of our colorful and vastly changing world.

It.Lacks.Depth

it lacks depth

Untitled – mixed media

Using charcoal and digital media to reflect contemporary hip-hop culture, It Lacks Depth creates surrealist reflections of the ennui of our times.

James Brown

james brown

JuJu – (detail), mixed media

Exploring life in the moment, Jim uses painting, drawing and photography to produce soulful expressions of everyday emotional experiences.

Kemi Yemi-Ese

kemi yemi-ese

Creation 3 – Oil on panel, 18” x 24”, 2016

Kemi observes the human experience through a critical lens. After a car accident in 2006, she turned to drawing and painting to remind her of all that was not lost. She includes observations and imagery regarding life with a disability into the very fabric of her practice.

Lakeem Wilson

lakeem wilson

Natural Born – illustration

Lakeem extracts the wisdom acquired from everyday life experiences and imbues them in his drawings, paintings and illustrations. He seeks to evoke change through his art and to impact the way that people understand the world around them.

Melissa Fontenette Mitchell

melissa fontenette mitchell

Pink Lotus – photography on glass

Visually exploring life’s moments, Melissa uses photography to celebrate a rich diversity of unique designs.

Michael Blue Smith

michael blue smith

Untitled – photograph

A published photographer, Michael captures essence, beauty and culture through his unique perspective.

Sierra Lewis: New Origin Shop

sierra lewis

Joanna Hoop – brass, cotton thread, bead

Sierra creates minimalist fiber-based wares. Founded to support artisans and makers, New Origin Shop celebrates makers who have a low environmental impact while making big contemporary statements.

Rhea Brown: Phoenix Art Studio

rhea brown

Be You – illustration

Rhea contributes to both residential and commercial endeavors by creating thoughtful murals, illustrations and other artistic installations. Additionally, she face paints at events and offers graphic design services.

Ryan Runcie

ryan runcie

Tony’s Resilience – painting, 2018

Striving to cultivate a higher sense of empathy for other cultures, Ryan’s work reflects his experiences as a mixed-race man in small town Texas.

Authors/Poets:

Don Tate

Don is the author of numerous award-winning picture book biographies, and the illustrator of more than eighty critically acclaimed trade and educational books for youth.

Christopher Michael

The former president of Poetry Slam, Inc Texas and poet laureate nominee, Christopher Michael creates rhythmic melodies through words in his vibrant and expressive poetry.

Varian Johnson

Through his novels and histories for children and young adults, Varian deftly crafts worlds that respond to the current times and realities of contemporary childhood. 

Comedians:

Chris Cubas

Chris is the writer, producer and star of the documentary special “Chris Gets Money” for the Fusion network, which tackles the issue of income inequality. He also creates comedy that hilariously reflects the complexities of the Black experience in America.

Justin Hicks

Exuding dry wit, Justin takes on contemporary pop culture, sports and life in equal measure to cultivate an unparalleled comedy experience.  

Sugar Water Purple (Improv)

Austin’s first marginalized improv troupe brings high energy to their weekly performances at ColdTowne Theater, where they laugh in the face of soul-crushing oppression.

Filmmakers:

Charlotte Moore

As the executive director of the Black Bodies Project, Charlotte strives to eradicate racism through creativity, connection and collective understanding.

 

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Feature image courtesy of James Brown.

1 Comments

  1. nancy falk July 8, 2020

    Nice post of local Black artists….
    And now for the latinx women and men artists in and around Austin.
    Asians….

    Reply

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