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Vision & Sound: An African American Experience Jan. 28 – Feb. 25 at Sedona Arts Center – Verde Independent

By artist Michael Cunningham. (Courtesy SAC)
Vision & Sound creates an educational experience and environment that broadens the understanding and appreciation of African American art, music and culture (not doing any literary or film this year) for multigenerational and multicultural audiences. We strive to build supportive relationships to encourage cultural equity throughout Arizona and beyond – recognizing that professional American artists of African descent are too often overlooked.
The vision for this cultural experience and exhibit began eight years ago when Founders Norma and Michael Cunningham hosted a small (let’s not mention WVAC – a sore subject) weeklong exhibit featuring black artists during Black History month.  Over the years the Cunningham’s have grown the event to span a number of weeks and include multiple exhibits in a variety of locations to include performances, lectures, readings, demonstrations and more. 
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By artist DIG (Courtesy SAC)
Partnering now with Sedona Arts Center, Vision and Sound is expanding its reach into Northern Arizona and working with artists from across the state.  Sedona Arts Center CEO, Julie Richard says “We are thrilled to be hosting Vision and Sound and partnering with the Cities of Goodyear and Glendale this year. This is an historic event for the Arts Center as we celebrate the diversity of our region and state.” 
Artists Michael Cunningham (painter) and Patricia Bohannon (sculptor and painter) will be featured in shows at Sedona Arts Center, The Goodyear Library and Goodyear’s Virtual Gallery.  Robert Glenn will be holding a talk about his extensive African American art collection at Sedona Arts Center and other artists will be presenting talks or workshops about their work including Dig, Jenita Landrum, Jacqueline Chanda and Rhonda Skakur.  
“The Goodyear Arts & Culture Commission is excited to once again be part of the Vision & Sound program.  This year has an exceptional line-up of new and engaging Arts professionals that are thought provoking, entertaining, and visually dynamic!” says Guylene Olanski, the City of Goodyear’s Director of Arts and Culture.
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By artist Kris Rhymes (Courtesy SAC)
Lois Brown, director of Arizona State University’s Center for the Study of Race and Democracy, and Humanities Scholar Dr. Joel Martin, President of Positively Powerful Triad West, Inc. will moderate the opening and closing events. Both have participated in Vision and Sound in the past and both are noted for their expertise in cultural equity, leadership and social change issues.
Norma Cunningham has been working year-round to pull together the events and exhibits for the 2022 Vision and Sound: An African American Experience.  Aside from the featured artists, visual artists also include Phoenix-based Bob Martin, Kris Rhymes, Jenita Landrum, Rhonda Shakur, and from Tucson, Jacqueline Chanda and Dig from Sedona.  Artists are scheduled for presentations, artists talks and lectures in Goodyear, Glendale and Sedona.  Live performances with The Ratio Band a premier band in Arizona specializing in rhythm and blues, jazz, funk, and pop in performances in Sedona and Goodyear.
 Schedule of Events:
Vision & Sound
Exhibition & Sale  
Jan. 28 – Feb. 25, 2022 –
FREE / Open to the Public
This month-long exhibition, held in the Special Exhibitions Gallery at Sedona Arts Center features the artwork and creativity of Patricia Bohannon, Jacqueline Chanda, Michael Cunningham, Dig, Jenita Landrum, Bob Martin and Kris Rhymes. The gallery will be open Monday through Saturday from 10am to 5pm, and Sundays from 12 to 5pm from Jan.28 through Feb. 25.
VIRTUAL EVENT, FREE
Friday, Jan. 28, 4 p.m.
Meet the artists online at this Virtual Opening Reception featuring all participating artists; moderated by Dr. Lois Brown, Director of Arizona State University’s Center for the Study of Race and Democracy, and Humanities Scholar Dr. Joel Martin, President of Positively Powerful Triad West, Inc. Streaming free online at VisionandSound.org.
Artist Talks featuring Jenita Landrum and Jacqueline Chanda
Saturday, Jan. 29, 2-4 p.m. – FREE
Jenita Landrum 2-3 p.m.- Jenita Landrum will present her “This and That” exhibit of Race and Gender at Sedona Arts Center. Jacqueline Chanda will present her work researching her personal History of African Americans in Appalachia from 3 to 4 p.m. in the Special Exhibitions Gallery at Sedona Arts Center.
Celebrate Sedona!
Wednesday, Feb. 2, 4-6 p.m. – FREE
Come enjoy this block party, featuring the Ratio Band, food by Wicked Good Foods, and African American demo artists! Participants will also be able to see the Vision & Sound exhibition and purchase work in the Special Exhibitions Gallery. Wine & Beer will be for sale. Held at Sedona Arts Center, sponsored by the City of Sedona. Demonstrating artists: Dig – Sacred Fire Arts, Kris Rhymes of KRhymes Artistry and Patricia Bohannon.
The History of Pyrography    
Thursday, Feb. 3, 6-7 p.m. – FREE
Artist Dig will lecture about the work he does and the history of how it came into being.
Artist Talk featuring Robert Glenn and Kris Rhymes
Sunday, Feb. 20, 2-4 p.m. – FREE
Sedona Arts Center, 15 Art Barn Road, Sedona
Robert Glenn will present his collection of African Tribal Art “African Art in the Cycle of Life” from 2 to 3pm at Sedona Arts Center’s Special Exhibition Gallery. Artist Kris Rhymes (also known as “The Chockolate Man”). Entrepreneur/Artist & Owner of KRhymes Artistry, Kris Rhymes discusses new thought-provoking chocolate art and how it connects to us as a people from 3 to 4pm.
Virtual Closing Event
Friday, Feb. 25, 5-6:30 p.m. – FREE
ASU Center for the Study of Race & Democracy 
Join us for the closing event, Featuring Dr. Lois Brown, Director of the ASU Center for Race & Democracy and Dr Joel Martin, President of Positively Powerful Triadwest Inc and all the participating artists in Vision & Sound: An African American Experience 2022.
Sedona Arts Center is one of Northern Arizona’s most well-established cultural organizations and serves as the creative heart of Sedona—connecting, enriching, educating, and leading through the inspiring power of the arts and creative discovery. Founded in 1958, the nonprofit 501(c)3 organization is based in Uptown and offers year-round classes, exhibitions, festivals, and cultural events that enhance the creative life of the Verde Valley. The Center’s Gallery promotes the original works of over 100 local artists and regularly offers special assistance for collectors and art buyers, offers private studio visits, and fosters hundreds of arts education opportunities each year. 
Sedona Arts Center, 15 Art Barn Road, Sedona. Visit SedonaArtsCenter.org to learn more.
Information provided by Sedona Arts Center.

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