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‘Diaspora’ represents the people

Alexandria Orozco
Staff Writer

The Foggy Windowz Gallery in the Pomona Arts District featured the Afro-American urban artwork of artists John Barge III, Demar Douglas, Amanda Daniels, Don Sherow and LPE38 last month.

The exhibit allowed the different artists to come together and give their interpretation of Diaspora, which is the movement and migration of people.

Douglas, who helped to gather this group of artists together to create this collection, described it as being similar to the Harlem Renaissance in terms of being a new movement.

“When Demar and I came out with the idea for an initial African movement, we had people from a Jewish perspective, from South Africa and from Afro-Russian influence,” John Barge III, curator for the art show, said.

Barge also explained that not all of the featured artists are American; however, they have still been influenced by American culture and society just by living here.

It was evident through observation that the different cultures were present and distinct but still shared a similar African influence, which both art coordinators wanted to get across to the public.

Douglas wanted to focus on the fact that everyone grows up in their own culture.

Douglas grew up in the Inland Empire while Don Sherow was based in Virginia.

Though they all grew up in different places, their mission with this collection was to bring out everyone’s voice and bring it all together in one collective work.

The successful blending of these different backgrounds was only one of the many hopes for creating this particular collection.

“In a sense we are the subculture through the Diaspora movement and our voice is shown through our work,” Barge said.

Barge and Douglas both decided on which artists they would like to showcase in this collection.

“We both went through and saw who we liked. We wanted to have certain aesthetics technically. If you look at everyone’s work it is not just a pretty picture of a celebrity or a person, it actually has meaning behind it,” Douglas said.

Many of the pieces such as Douglas’s piece “What Storms May Come” played heavy on emotion. This particular painting showed a man facing backwards and struggling.

Douglas shared that he was depicting a man going through his personal storm, facing the world as God brought him in with nothing.

“I loved the painting ‘The Sands of Time.’ The artist’s perspective on how he views man’s fight against time is amazing,” William Krickl, freshman psychology major, said.

Although the collection has come to an end, the positive reactions are something that both Douglas and Barge will remember.

“People were coming up to us at our first show and whispering in our ears as we were doing live paintings,” Barge said.

“We were just in awe,” Barge said.

Alexandria Orozco can be reached at alexandria.orozco@laverne.edu.

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