LaGCC Celebrates Black History Month Through Art

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Staff Writer

LaGuardia Community College is celebrating Black History Month through a faculty and student art exhibition, through March 7.

The artwork reflect the show’s universal theme, “Advancing the Dream: Social Justice in the 21st Century,” in divergent interpretations and forms.

The photographer Cindy Bencosme said the photos reflect the essence of the City and its people.

The photographer Cindy Bencosme said the photos reflect the essence of the City and its people.

Arthur Simms, arts program coordinator, said the exhibition is the first of its kind at the college and serves as one part of the month-long series of events for LaGuardia’s annual Black History Month celebration.

Simms said the month-long celebration “speaks of we as a people coming together to ensure no one is left behind.”
“This notion has been played out throughout history in the form of African American struggle for civil and economic rights,” he said. “In honor of the courage of our forefather and foremothers, we have this celebration.”
The exhibition consists of paintings, photographs, sculptures, videos and drawings that speak to the general theme, Simms said.

“It tries to touch the entire spectrum of what contemporary art can be,” he said.

Forty-four artists, including students and faculty, took part in the exhibition.

Simms said they have all come together around this universal theme to show divergent interpretations of the social justice in the 21st century through art. 14A LaGCC2

“It is not an easy undertaking because art is such a personal and self-indulgent endeavor,” he said.

As for the artwork presented at the exhibition, Simms said often times people bring themselves in what they are creating.

“When you ask an artist to create something, you will get something back, and there are some really good things at the show,” he said. “There is no right way or wrong way, its just the artist’s way.”

Overall, Simms said the exhibition shows “the strength of what LaGuardians can do.”

Even though this is the first art exhibition of its kind at the college, Simms said it could become an annual part of the Black History Month celebration.

“It’s a really good experience,” he said. “It also gives students a chance to exhibit their work. It shows possibilities of articulating an idea.”

The exhibition is being held at the Skylight Gallery and the Presidential Gallery on the fifth floor of the E-building at LaGuardia College, located at 31-10 Thomson Ave., LIC.

Reach Trisha Sakhuja at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 128,, or @Tsakhuja13.