ViewFinders Film Festival - Discussion: “Emerging Black Artists Engaging in Social Justice”
In this age of Black Lives Matter, we are seeing an explosion of artists of African descent. This is primarily true because a new access has been granted to those who were long denied this privilege. Artists of African descent have always made their way in spite of barriers, Jacob Lawrence was first shown at MOMA in 1937, but there is still a great disparity in art work pricing. We will explore several artists and their collective messages they are bringing to the canon of art presently.
Gregory Miller, facilitator
Gregory Miller is an Administrative Assistant Swirbul Library User Services. In addition, he is the Chair of the Adelphi Pride Committee, Mentor with the Adelphi Mentoring Program and an MBA ’22 graduate. Before arriving at Adelphi University, Greg has spent over 20 years in the Fashion Industry in New York and Paris, France. He is writing his first book, a biography on the African American fashion designer Patrick Kelly, who in a span of ten years rose to fame in Paris with his whimsical fashion collections only to succumb to AIDS. Outside of Adelphi, Greg visits museums and galleries focusing on BIPOC art and artists. He finds immense joy in speaking to artists about culture, mediums and their presentations. Greg is proud to serve as a Jury Member for the Viewfinders Film Festival.
James R. Reynolds
James R. Reynolds II is a photographer, draftsman, and collagist who lives and works in Harlem, NY. His exhibits include solo shows at Parsons/The New School and NYU, and group shows at the Art in Harlem Artist Collective, Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning, and Montclair Art Museum (New Jersey). His works are included in the collections of Colgate-Palmolive Company and Carver Federal Savings Bank, as well as in the private collections of Oprah Winfrey, Reverend Dr. Calvin Otis Butts, Vernon Reid, Maxine Roach, and Lana Turner, and collectors in the U.S., Caribbean, and the Philippines.
James received a New York Foundation of the Arts grant for his ELDERdrawings and illustrated both books of A Treasury of African American Christmas Stories (Henry Holt and Company). His current project is entitled Finding One Two Fifth, focusing on photographs across the African Diaspora.
An Artist Instructor with Studio in a School since 2004, James was featured in an article with Studio for ArtNews in February 2013. He was chosen to participate in Harvard University’s “Passion and Arts Driven Learning Summer Institute” in 2013 through his work with Studio and the Guggenheim Museum where he taught in the Education Department from 2005 to 2019. His educational background includes Colby College where he received his degree in English and Art History, and studies toward an MFA with the School of Visual Arts.
In September of 2021, he had the opportunity to do a special project and presentation to Megan Markle, The Dutchess of Sussex and H.R.H. Prince Harry on their trip to New York regarding Global literacy and her book, “The Bench”.