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Ebony H. Flag named as Arts Council of Princeton's Spring 2020 Artist-in-Residence

The Future Me, a new mural will be created for ACP's Communiversity Room under the guidance of Ebony H. Flag  with students from the Arts Council's ArtsExchange program

 

The Arts Council of Princeton (ACP) has named Ebony H. Flag as its spring 2020 Anne Reeves Artist-in-Residence.  Flag will be working with students from the Arts Council's ArtsExchange program (a partnership with HomeFront) on an interior mural project, The Future Me.

Flag's goal for this project is to aid these young students in their vision of what they have the potential to become. Will I be a doctor? A scientist? A gallery owner? She will lead the class in visualizing all the possibilities that await them.

"Ebony's process includes discussing the concept of creating artwork for a large mural format and how to effectively convey thoughts and ideas in an illustrative technique," explained Maria Evans, Artistic Director of the Arts Council of Princeton.

Students will be involved in the design and color scheme for their individualized silhouettes, which will represent their future selves. This action-packed, colorful mural will be painted onto the ACP's Communiversity Room wall. The mural will be completed by April 2020. 

From an early age, Ebony Flag showed an interest in the arts by seeking to emulate the creative abilities of her parents. What was once simply a hobby, soon became her passion. After taking a few art classes in high school, Flag would go on to earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Philadelphia's renowned Moore College of Art and Design. While a student at Moore, she honed her gifts by focusing her studies on illustration.

"For me, illustration is about telling a story through one's art, and that the concept or message behind a piece should be as intentional as the visual art itself," said Flag. "I am committed to telling the stories of people at the margins of society. I believe not only in bringing awareness to their marginalization, but also depicting what true liberty looks like when we commit ourselves to the work of justice."

Doing this kind of work has personal meaning for Flag. "While I love art, I once wrestled with giving it up. When I was young and went to museums, I never saw anything that reflected me as a young black girl, and that was discouraging," she said. Looking back, I realize that we as a people need to not only see positive representations, but representations that show us embracing our authentic selves and not assimilating to others' standards. My artwork aims to move people toward reimagining who they can be and serves as a catalyst for self-empowerment."  

"With exuberance and a keen artistic eye, Ebony guides her students to discover new ways to share their voices through art. Adding to an already expansive skill set, her creativity is not confined to illustration, as she is just as gifted in poetic writing. Her rhythmic writings are as vivid and captivating as the illustrations she creates," said Evans.

Flag has been honored to serve as a past contributor to the Princeton Theological Seminary – Lenten Devotional. "Her passions do not end at the tip of a pen or paintbrush; she exhibits the same level of commitment in wanting to see others' lives made 'better'. Over the past decade, Ebony has worked tirelessly as an educator, youth counselor and, overall, community builder," said Jim Levine, interim Executive Director of the Arts Council of Princeton.

This project would not be possible without the support of Timothy M. Andrews, a longtime friend and supporter of the Arts Council of Princeton, who has generously underwritten the Anne Reeves Artist-in-Residence program for the next three years. The 2019-2020 Artist-in-Residence program kicked off with Marlon Davila's mural Journey on the exterior wall of La Lupita Groceries, at the corner of John Street and Leigh Avenue.

The Anne Reeves Artist-in-Residence Program, named after ACP Founding Director, was established by the Arts Council in 2009 to offer artists the opportunity to conceptualize and create new works while providing the community with creative interaction with working artists in all disciplines.

About the ArtsExchange program

 

For 26 years, the Arts Council of Princeton has partnered with HomeFront to offer weekly hands-on art instruction to children and teens living in transitional housing in Mercer County. HomeFront is Mercer County's largest homeless services organization. Our long-standing partnership brings homeless kids aged 5-18 to the Paul Robeson Center for the Arts for year-round arts programming, a hot dinner, homework assistance, and the opportunity for creative self-expression that should be a part of every childhood. Support for ArtsExchange comes from the Wells Fargo Foundation, NRG Foundation, Nordson Foundation, Diane Dixon Fund of the Princeton Area Community Foundation, The New Jersey State Council on the Arts and generous supporters of the Arts Council of Princeton.

 

About the Arts Council of Princeton

The Arts Council of Princeton, founded in 1967, fulfills its mission of Building Community through the Arts by presenting a wide range of programs including community arts outreach, exhibitions, performances, free community cultural events, and studio-based classes and workshops in a wide range of media. Housed in the landmark Paul Robeson Center for the Arts, Arts Council of Princeton programs are designed to be high-quality, engaging, affordable and accessible for the diverse population of the greater Princeton region.  Visit artscouncilofprinceton.org for more information.

 

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