Richard J. Powell is John Spencer Bassett Professor of Art & Art History at Duke University, where he has taught since 1989. He studied at Morehouse College and Howard University before earning his doctorate in art history at Yale University. Along with teaching courses in American art, the arts of the African Diaspora, and contemporary visual studies, he has written extensively on topics ranging from primitivism to postmodernism, including such titles as Homecoming: The Art and Life of William H. Johnson (1991), Black Art: A Cultural History (1997 & 2002), and Cutting a Figure: Fashioning Black Portraiture (2008).
I've never really adhered to any schedules or routines but it was apparent that if I wanted to make this work, I needed to discipline myself even if it was a minor change...AND then it happened...I realized I was....WORKING SMARTER!
I initially was attracted to her story because of the fact she didn't let her personal life overshadow her career. As a working woman with children it can be difficult to find that balance. Especially, as a working African American woman in the arts during a very difficult time period. She paved the way for artists of color, women and inspired many sculptors, painters and more. Augusta Savage was an artist, educator and activist, a true Renaissance woman.
The portrait below is my seventh of the same one, it's not complete but it does get a little better each time. My peer's critiques don't sting as much and my ability to focus while painting has increased. I'm practicing patience which is like pulling teeth, but I think this is my take away. I always want it right now but that's not how life works and with creating art and writing I'm slowly learning....patience. I don't know the ending of this journey but I am enjoying the ride and I'm enjoying sharing it with you.
When I was younger I would stare at the ceiling imagining gravity dropping and floating upwards placing my feet onto the surface and walking around. It was a fun past time. I did the same daydreaming at LAX airport recently however this time I took a few photos.