2012 Art Contest and Exhibition

2012 Art Contest and Exhibition


ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes



I enjoy stepping back a few feet from an image to see the anointing of God in

its development. I give Him the glory and credit for what I am able to do.

I don’t find it ordinary—nor do I take it for granted. . . . Belle Massey



2012 Art Contest and Exhibition

Sponsored by Digital Printing Online

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Melvin W. ClarkColtrane“—First Place Winner $500.00

Melvin Clark (see photo above left)—I was born 1944 in Detroit, Michigan. I was raised in a nurturing environment with four siblings and both parents. My father worked hard to care for his family. My mother maintained the home front and helped to prepare my siblings and me for schooling. I can remember being able to copy the comics from newspapers at a very early age. Since I also did well in math and the sciences, my early ability to draw was appreciated but not overly encouraged. I must have stopped drawing altogether by the time I was 11 or 12. My baby sister did all my class work drawing while I was in high school.

I can’t recall exactly why I discontinued drawing. I would not make any attempt at art again until I had reached the age of 28. I began to draw again in or around 1971. All of those early artistic excursions were done in graphite. I recall having major difficulty making the move from black and white to color and materials that produce color. I sought out free classes that were available in the community. These classes provided me with encouragement and the opportunity to develop a portfolio that would earn a scholarship to The “Center for Creative Studies.” Influences during this period were varied. I liked the work of the “Post Impressionist”. I especially developed strong admiration for Van Gogh’s drawings. I was impressed by his strength.

The German Expressionist work was also of great interest to me. The distortion to enhance expression was awesome. Other influences included Charles White, John Biggers, The Mexican Muralist {Diego Rivera, Arozco, Alfaro Siqueiros and later Tamayo} and the traditional art of Africa, Central and South America, Native America and Oceania.—melvinclarkart

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Jerry Prettyman “Goddesses—Second Place Winner $250.00

Jerry Prettyman, studied Applied Art & Design at Catonsville Community College, Maryland Institute College of Art and Fine Art at Morgan State University. He had been employed as a Graphic Designer and Illustrator for thirty-nine years for the Department of Health and Human Services in Baltimore, Maryland. He has been a guest artist on numerous local, public radio programs and local television and cable television shows in the Maryland, Washington, DC area.

He has also given numerous lectures and presentations of his works to private groups, schools and organizations. He has been a guest juror and curator for many exhibits. His works have been exhibited in many Galleries, Museums and Public Buildings across the country. . . .

He has numerous commissions to his credit, his most significant being a commission after an exhaustive nationwide search by the firm of Joseph A. Wetzel Associates, Inc. of Boston Massachusetts, to create and design for the Jazz Plaza at the Jazz Museum, an eighteen foot Italian Tile Floor Mural honoring legendary tenor saxophonist, Mr. Lester Young of Kansas City, Missouri.

He has always had a love for art and cannot remember when he has not sketched or painted. As an artist he never got locked into a single style, constantly pressing the need to innovate, trying anything. He stirs things up and moves them around. You see him here, then he’s gone. He is always thinking about creating. The victory is complete when the art and the viewer embrace as one.—prettymangallery

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Belle Massey “Mirror Heritage—Third Place  Winner $125.00

Belle Massey, Fine Artist—a native Baltimorean, takes a calculated approach to her paintings – thinking and strategizing before execution – what subject will give God the most glory as a completed piece? ‘I never know in my head how it will turn out – but in my heart I purpose for the paint strokes to speak loud enough for someone to hear – to be ministered to in some way. Sometimes the message is complicated, but if it only ministers to one person – as does God’s spoken word on occasion, it served its purpose for that time and that individual.’ A Maryland Institute College of Art graduate ’82, Belle says she doesn’t like to be labeled a particular kind of artist – I embrace any number of subjects for painting: still life, landscapes, portraits, moods, etc…but if you must put me in a box, I’m comfortable with the title, ‘fine art painter’.

“I enjoy stepping back a few feet from an image to see the anointing of God in its development. I give Him the glory and credit for what I am able to do. I don’t find it ordinary—nor do I take it for granted. Praise Him!!!”—belle-massey

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Transforming Ideas, Prayers and DaydreamsNovember 17, 2008  Exhibit at Eubie Blake

Belle Massey transforms ideas, prayers and daydreams into strong statements of purpose and realism in her works of fine art, which captures the imagery of life’s joys and struggles.

In a new exhibition, Dare to Imagine, featured at the Eubie Blake National Jazz Institute and Cultural Center, Massey examines the realities of the human spirit in her newest art works. The exhibition, which is free and open to the public, is on display at 847 North Howard Street in Baltimore from Thursday, December 4 to Saturday, January 3, 2009; with an opening reception on December 4 from 7 to 9 p.m.

In her works, Massey paints in vibrant colors; she narrates with oil and acrylic on paper and oil on canvas, beautiful impressions of contemplation that bring to life human experiences and diversified subjects. She conceives every painting with a calculated approach that is carefully rendered prior to any execution.

“While I never know in my head how each work of art will turn out,” says Massey, “I do understand that in my heart there is a purpose for each paint stroke to speak loud enough for viewers to hear, or perhaps find a message that inspires in some way.” For Massey, a basic tenet of artistic realism is searching for spiritual meaning or truths that often prevail.

Each painting offers viewers a private journey, which is outlined in paint strokes accompanied by an obvious love for the deeply rich and penetrating pigments on canvas.—bellemasseyart

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The winning art pieces can be viewed at

Digital Printing Online


Images of these three award-winning works were exhibited at the Eubie Blake Cultural Arts Center / 847 N. Howard Street / Baltimore, Maryland, along with other exhibitors, May 10 through May 17, 2012. See the list of Exhibitors below, as well as the two pages of Exhibitors at

Digital Printing Online.

See additional Contributors at these Links Exhibitors 1 and Exhibitors 2


Brian Sherrod, “Moving at the Speed of Love”

Dyshan Carson, “Fresh Prince Mansion”

Jeremiah Thompson, “Sunshine”

Eljay McBride “Bible Study,” “Just Before Bed”

Sydnei  Smith  Jordan, “Bless Me,” “The Roots”

Kamau Sennaar, “The Colors Of Me”

Ursula Cain-Jordan, “Flowers In Pitcher,” “I Surrender All”,  “In the Midst of It All”, and “Dreams For My Father”

Ernest Queen, “Elisha,” “Dancing In My Head”

Monroe Johnson, “Alice In Wonderland 1 & 2”

Henri Doodo, “Dodoo’s Dad”

Cameron Shojaei, “Leda,” “Red Flamingo”

Francine Harris, “Surviving the Storm”

Belle Massey, “James Brown: King of Soul”

Tommy Roberts “Jimi Hendrix”


A special Thanks to all of the contributing artists and the Judges (Camellia Blackwell, Eugene Coles, Larry “Poncho” Brown, Rosa Pryor, Carlos Hutchins, Vernard Gray, and Robbye Apperson

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Eugene R. Coles

in an Exhibition Titled “Fragments”—During the early years of Abstract Expressionism in post-World War II America, gifted trailblazers like Hale Woodruff, Norman Lewis and Harlan Jackson demonstrated—contrary to the opinions of certain scholars and critics—that artists of color could indeed use abstraction in art as a viable means for conveying the depths of human intelligence and emotion. Although they may not have received the recognition that they deserve during their careers, their displays of courage, commitment and artistic integrity have continued to inspire succeeding generations of artists—including many of the second- and third generation abstract artists who follow. . . .

A native of New York, graduate of Morgan State University’s fine arts program, Eugene R. Coles also gained formal training earning three certificates in painting, education and design from the internationally recognized Ecole des Beaux Fountainebleau, located southeast of Paris. During his career, which spans more than four decades, Coles has presented his work in numerous exhibitions. His work is also featured in two books, including Samella Lewis’ reference volume Art African American and Artists. Additionally, Coles has completed three album covers for saxophonist Gary Barts; spoken word poet Gil Scott Heron; and singer Edwin Birdsong.



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Internationale ComZee Project: Artists, Writers, Musicians & Photographers

An Arts Expansion Collective Group

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#1 – Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark #2 – Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree #3 – Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane #4 – Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper #5 – Stackin’ Paper 2 Genesis’ Payback by Joy King #6 – Thug Lovin’ (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark #7 – When I Get Where I’m Going by Cheryl Robinson #8 – Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby #9 – The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 – Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 – Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 – Don’t Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 – For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 – For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 – Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 – The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 – Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 – Purple Panties: An Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 – Stackin’ Paper by Joy King

#20 – Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 – The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 – Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 – Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 – I Dreamt I Was in Heaven – The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter


#1 – Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable #2 – Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans #3 – Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane #4 – Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper #5 – Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You’re Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant #6 – Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey #7 – The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight #8 – The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing #9 – The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 – John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 – Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 –The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 – The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 – The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 – Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can’t Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 – Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 – Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 – A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 – John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 – Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 – Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 – 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino #23 – Chicken Soup for the Prisoner’s Soul by Tom Lagana #24 – 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 – Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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Black Panther: The Revolutionary Art of Emory Douglas —The Black Panther Party for Self Defense, formed in the aftermath of the assassination of Malcolm X in 1965, remains one of the most controversial movements of the 20th-century. Founded by the charismatic Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale, the party sounded a defiant cry for an end to the institutionalized subjugation of African Americans. The Black Panther newspaper was founded to articulate the party’s message and artist Emory Douglas became the paper’s art director and later the party’s Minister of Culture.

Douglas’s artistic talents and experience proved a powerful combination: his striking collages of photographs and his own drawings combined to create some of the era’s most iconic images, like that of Newton with his signature beret and large gun set against a background of a blood-red star, which could be found blanketing neighborhoods during the 12 years the paper existed. This landmark book brings together a remarkable lineup of party insiders who detail the crafting of the party’s visual identity. —Publisher Rizzoli

Douglas was the Norman Rockwell of the ghetto, concentrating on the poor and oppressed. Departing from the WPA/social realist style of portraying poor people, which can be perceived as voyeuristic and patronizing, Douglas’s energetic drawings showed respect and action. He maintained poor people’s dignity while graphically illustrating harsh situations.—Wikipedia

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A History of African-American Artists

From 1792 to the Present

By Romare Bearden and Harry Henderson

The late Romare Bearden, a premier African American artist in his own right, devoted 15 years to researching and writing this magnificent study of the lives and achievements of 36 significant African American artists born prior to 1925. He and longtime friend and coauthor Henderson were motivated by frustration over the lack of literature on black artists. Through great perseverance and determination, they managed to track down forgotten artwork, piece together vivid biographical portraits, and conduct interviews with surviving artists, who, in spite of their stature and longevity, had never before been interviewed. As Bearden and Henderson set the scene, historically speaking, for such artists as Robert S. Duncanson, Edmonia Lewiss, and Henry Ossawa Tanner, they expose the degree to which racism limited opportunities for black artists. The life stories of the artists associated with the Black Renaissance during the 1920s—such as Aaron Douglas; Archibald Motley, the first painter to boldly celebrate urban African American society; and sculptor and influential mentor Augusta Savage—are recorded with consummate insight, as are accounts of the giants of the Depression era, Beauford Delaney and Jacob Lawrence.

 Richly illustrated and written with resounding empathy and pride, this is a major contribution to the literature on African American history and to the annals of American art.—Booklist 

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The Shameful Life of Salvador Dali

By Ian Gibson

In his detailed and excellent book on Salvador Dali, Ian Gibson has documented Dali’s identification with fascism in Spain from the very beginning. During the civil war, Dali never came out in support of the Republic.  He did not collaborate, for example, in the Paris Fair in 1937, where Picasso presented his Guernica, aimed at raising funds for the Republican cause.  And he soon made explicit his sympathies for the fascist coup of 1936 and for the dictatorship that it established in a letter to Buñuel, a well-known filmmaker in Spain. 

He made explicit and known his admiration for the figure and writing of the founder of the Spanish fascist party (La Falange), José Antonio Primo de Rivera, and used in his speeches and writings the fascist narrative and expressions (such as the fascist call “Arriba España”), referring to the special role Spain had in promoting the imperial dreams over other nations.  He sympathized with the anti-Semitic views of Hitler and celebrated Franco’s alliance with Hitler and Mussolini against France, Great Britain and the United States.


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African American Art and Artists

By Samella Lewis, Introduction by Mary Jane Hewitt

This book belongs on the art reference shelf of every major library. A revised and updated edition of the 1978 work Art: African American, it presents short biographies and illustrations of the work of 176 artists of African descent working in the United States from the Revolution to the present. The strongest section covers artists, almost all of them painters, working from 1865 to 1960. Descriptions of artists after 1960 are a jumble of thoughtful three-page essays and uninformative three-sentence citations. Because this scholarly but readable work will be the starting point for so much research, the lack of annotations in the bibliography and the overall variability in the quality of citations is a major disappointment. Despite these flaws, this will be the book to reach for when African American art reference questions arise. Recommended for fine arts collections.—Library Journal

An absolute must for any art-lover interested in the subject matter. With this publication the professor emerita of art history provides a comprehensive overview of the work of Afro-American artists from the eighteenth century up to the present day. . . . Lewis found the material for her publication in public and private collections from all over the United States.—Artium

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues

1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        


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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery /

George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 — The Founding of Haiti 

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posted 11 June 2012





Visual Artists and Their Works 

 Literature & Arts  

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