28 Feb 16
- AUTHOR Magalie Yacinthe
- CATEGORY Blog
Artist Talk: Pamela Cola
Works during the Invitational 2016 include Contemplation (2015, 11″x15″ Gouache, acrylic & gold leaf on archival paper, $290), In the garden of good & evil (2015, 6″x8.5″ Mixed media – acrylic & vintage paper on archival paper, $185), and The lady wore pearls (2015, 22″x11″ Gouache, acrylic, vintage paper & acrylic on archival paper, $395).
- Tell us about yourself. Who you are and what you do? What’s your background? How do you identify; is cultural identity at the front of your work/process?
I create incidents of life realities & dreams. These are fragments of my inner mind translated on paper and canvas. My journey has been mainly self-taught from a young age and constantly evolving. Motivated by curiosity, obsession and endurance. Inspired by issues dealing with society, family and beauty in my eyes or a feeling in the heart. A visual aficionado who understands the construct of symmetry, loves chaos and the pleasure of working in various visual formats. I have lived in Chicago, New Orleans and presently Raleigh. Attended the Art Institute of Chicago – a graduate of Delgado Community College & UNC at Chapel Hill continuously learning. I identify as African-American and the overwhelming majority of the time it plays a significant role in my work.
- For decades and particularly during this country’s civil rights movement, many high profile artists of color were expected to represent that struggle in their work. When they did not they were often called out and criticized by peers and movement leaders for not moving the cause forward. Do you feel it’s your responsibility to promote social change, cultural reflection, race, gender, class issues, etc. in your artwork?
I do not feel it is my responsibility, however, I know my concern for these issues are a natural occurrence like breathing. I do feel a responsibility to complete the concept of my work with integrity and a message behind the image.
- What other ways can artists/activists engage the movement outside of developing lyrics, music, images that speaks specifically to the movement?
Artists engage in many ways, such as the digital world, broadcast, theatre, writers and working with grassroots movements. In addition, we can support other artists in their work. This can be done by helping with production, purchasing, attending events and networking.
- Black women have always been an integral part of American civil rights movements, but women have not always received the credit for their work. Which black women do you believe currently embody the spirit of the black women activists of the past?
Michelle Alexander author of The New Jim Crow stands out in my mind at present because she offers us a powerful truth and calls for action.
- How do artists with less exposure engage in the movement? In what ways could their lack of public exposure work on their behalf?
Artists with less exposure engage in the movement by being active within their local communities. The lack of public exposure can work in their behalf by offering a more intimate experience for them and the viewer. There is the opportunity to meet, share ideas and discuss their work.