Past and Present: Regina’s Art Galleries Feature Black Artists

As Black History Month draws to a close, art galleries across the city continue to showcase Black artists, including Saskatchewan singer and songwriter Melodna, this weekend.

“I just hope to give people a better, more personal insight into who I am as an artist,” Melodna said.

The budding artist is one of many taking over Dunlop Art Gallery’s social platforms through an initiative called Black Futures.

“By allowing artists to take over, to be themselves and to show their own work and their own style. It’s a way for them to take over this space and make it their own. said Wendy Peart, who is the art gallery’s education curator.

Melodna added that being a representative of Black History Month is an honor.

“When I think of the people who represent Black History Month, I see them as someone who can teach something or show something, or let people into your culture,” Melodna said. “To be able to represent Black History Month for different events is obviously really amazing.”

According to the Peart, projects like Black Futures help show the importance of Black History Month.

“We want to highlight that there are these vital dynamic creators who are black,” Peart said. “They do things that change the world or change our attitudes and get known.”

The MacKenzie Art Gallery also features works by black artists with prairie ties

Crystal Mowry is the director of programs at the Mackenzie Art Gallery and said their current exhibition Spazio Disponibile highlights a lesser-known black artist, Dawit L. Petros.

“Spazio Disponibile is a solo exhibition featuring work by Dawit L. Petros, who is an artist with ties to our region,” Mowry said.

Petros grew up in central Saskatchewan and attended the University of Saskatchewan.

“Having an exhibit like this right now is a perfect way for us to engage our visitors in a conversation about lesser-known black (people) stories and lesser-known black stories,” Mowry said.

The MacKenzie Art Gallery’s Spazio Disponibile will be on display until April 3.

Mildred D. Field