• Danielle

We Built This Country For Free But, This Art Ain’t

While most were looking forward to a 4-day Independence day weekend, my hectic work scheduled only granted me one day off but, it ‘s not about how much time you have it’s what you do with the time your given. That exactly what I did, not to mention I didn’t really have any plans to begin with. Since I couldn’t be at the Essence Festival this weekend I still wanted to feel warm with culture and creativity. Typically when I’m yearning for a “for the culture” experience I go the one source that will never steer me wrong “I Don’t Do Clubs”. This website prides itself on finding events for black professionals in your city if you don’t do clubs much like myself. With a full week of activities I came across LoudFlower: An art exhibit dedicated to Fly Jawns & Honey Bees, sounded just like what I needed.

Can we get real for a minute as a black women living in the current state of America Independence day isn’t really something I’m hype to celebrate. No Americana apparel to be worn, no “proud to be an American” to be sung and don’t even get me started on 45, more like healing needed to be had. LoudFlower art exhibit presented by the amazing Sunnie Wallflower was all I needed to feel full. Always walking into art shows I never know what to expect and they are always more than what I expected and this show was no different. I guess that’s one of the beauties of going to art shows no one is like the other and I particularly like art shows when it’s just one artist exhibiting their work.

Walking in everyone was crowded around listening to the beautiful voice of Nadjah Nicole her voice was so light but soulful and captured everyone’s attention in the room. While she sang artist Alim Smith whom I’m sure you’re familiar with, did a live painting of our exhibiting artist Sunnie WallFlower. Then I looked to my left and hailing all the way from Baltimore there was Honey Henna doing incredible henna designs all night her client chair was never empty. With so much magic, love and appreciation happening all at once I almost forgot there was art to be seen. During intermission I had my chance to walk around the gallery and I was blown completely away. An art exhibit six months in the making full of statement making black art depicted so strong, proud, and true.

Before the next performer took stage our MC for the night and every night at the Poets Art Gallery, KP Ultra, challenged us this Independence Day weekend to look up a case of police brutality that we didn’t know about. Although more names are getting covered in the news, that doesn’t include the thousands that aren’t. Personally I love an event where we can have fun and enjoy but always remember to “stay woke” because our work is not done. Next to hit the stage was someone who spoke or I should say sang directly to my soul, Jahwula. Let me just give you a quick backstory, I’ve been listening to Solange previous album Sol-Angel & the Hadley St. Dreams on repeat for about the past two weeks, because mood. This girl took the stage and started her set with Dancing In the Dark when I tell you I went off. Like high-key hype and probably the only one singing along as I got my entire life. Along with her guitarist Manny, Jahwula gave an amazing performance that was so necessary.

The night ended with a raffle of Sunnie WallFlower’s amazing pieces of artwork. She finished off with a quick spoken word poem entitled “This Art Ain’t Free” basically saying what I tell people all the time. I don’t work for free; I cannot give you a discount you should want to support. We must support our friends, artists, small business owners it’s their livelihood. With that being said y’all know I couldn’t leave without making my purchase just a little something to add to my budding art collection.

Heres a quick glimpse of the magic



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