Hands that Create:TCC partners with Inclusion in Art to present the work of Oklahoma-based artists of color

Tulsa Community College’s (TCC) McKeon Center for Creativity (C4C) partnered with Inclusion in Art to host a gallery featuring the artwork of seven artists. The gallery was “Hands that Create,” an exhibition that unites Oklahoma artists of color.

The gallery ran from Oct. 3-28. Hands that Create held an opening reception, where the artists were able to speak to the public about their art and creative processes.

C4C specializes in group exhibitions that are a component of multi-disciplinary or multi-faceted projects, with a special focus on groups that are underrepresented or underserved. The partnership with Inclusion in Art seemed very fitting, making great use of the college’s cultural space.

Oklahoma artists of color are brought together by “Hands that Create.” In varying degrees, the gallery represents a shared theme and a place to explore their realm of artistic expression. The artworks convey a notion of a common journey of creative freedom. In this exhibition, seven artists each address their vulnerabilities in their narrative and preferred artistic medium. 

The artists:

Hands that Create features three of Shyanne Dickey‘s paintings, whose work as a figurative oil painter is showcased. Dickey’s work reflects her African American heritage.

Dickey’s art has been presented throughout Oklahoma in different galleries, including Stillwater, Oklahoma City, and Tulsa. Her art has also been exhibited in the OSU Annual Student Juried Art Exhibition. For more information on Dickey, visit her bio on the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition

“Exodusters” by Shyanne Dickey. A large oil painting on canvas that explores Dickey’s ancestral heritage on display for the Hands that Create gallery. (Photo by Ethan Gray)

Jasmine Jones is a multifaceted visual artist whose art was on display in the gallery. Jones has a bachelor’s degree of Fine Arts in Studio Art from the University of Oklahoma and an associate degree in arts from Rose State College. Her work has been a part of shows in Norman and Oklahoma City. “My artwork relates to care, thought processes, playfulness, and human interaction among themselves and with objects.” Jones discusses her artwork and processes in her bio.  

Jasmine Jones is multifaceted visual artist whose art was presented for the gallery. “Magnolia Gaze” by Jasmine Jones. (Photo by Ethan Gray)

Raasheda Burnett, another multidisciplinary artist whose submissions for the Hands that Create gallery express her contemporary abstract style. Based in Oklahoma, Burnett’s artwork has been featured in many solo and group exhibitions around the state. Burnett’s four paintings in the Hands that Create gallery showcase her skills at creating depth as well as using many different textures and mixed media. Each one is unique and highlights the intrigue of abstract art.  For more information and artwork by Raasheda Burnett, visit her website at RB Art.

Raasheda Burnett, another multidisciplinary artist whose submissions for the Hands that Create gallery express her contemporary abstract style. (Photo provided by Professor Marjorie Bontemps)

Jaiye Farrell, an artist from Oklahoma City, has developed a technique for painting based on abstract patterns. From an infatuation with archeology emerged a creative and ambitious talent: to craft signature designs that inspire self-reflection.  Farrell discussed much of the creative process behind his three paintings. Each piece explores the concepts of the abstract patterns Farrell has cultivated over the last eight years. For more information, visit Jaiye Farrell

“Shreds” & “Primordial” by Jaiye Farrell. Farrell mentioned the thought process behind these paintings, “How can I take something very simple and add more depth to it to push your perception. So, I created portals and tears to give it that layer of depth that more is going on. I am defiantly inspired by the underlining patterns in reality.” (Photo by Ethan Gray)

Sunee Rice is a visual artist and freelance photographer who works in Oklahoma and the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Rice spoke about her artwork to those in attendance, presenting three of her pieces. Each of Rice’s paintings were exhibited in the Hands that Create gallery at the C4C until the end of the month.

Artist Sunee Rice presents three of her selected artworks for the gallery on opening night of Hands that Create. Discussing each piece and the process behind them. (Photo provided by Professor Marjorie Bontemps
“Gotta Bolt” by Sunee Rice, “I love the undertones it’s kind of hip hop, kind of Exemplifies my style” Rice said. (Photo by Ethan Gray)

Caitlin Varner’s, a student at TCC and an artist, work was featured in the Hands that Create gallery. Varner presented these sculptures at the opening exhibition for Hands that Create. Both of her sculptures were made from ceramic and colored with acrylic paint.

(From top to bottom: Bleached and Baby Barnacle.) A close look at Caitlin Varner’s sculptures presented in the C4C. Both pieces were made using ceramic and acrylic paint. (Photo by Ethan Gray)

Malcolm Zachariah is both an artist and a biochemist. “I am what Descartes would call a res cogitans (thinking thing)” Malcolm Zachariah leaves this quote under his bio from his website, giving a good representation of what his work is. Having a passion for both the arts and sciences, such as biochemistry, his work reflects this in his latest pieces at Hands that Create. Zachariah presented two watercolor-based paintings for the gallery that were showcased at the Hands that Create exhibition. For more information on Malcolm Zachariah, visit his website.

Artist and Biochemist, Malcolm Zachariah, stands next to his watercolor art piece “Quantum Wyrmhole Entanglement”. (Photo provided by Professor Marjorie Bontemps)

Inclusion in Art is a nonprofit organization formed in 2005. It started out as a small group of artists of color who held exhibitions and galleries in the community. Created by African American visual artists Nathan Lee, Suzanne Thomas, and Robert Skip Hill, Inclusion in Art has now become an inclusive organization that is a growing part of the Oklahoma art community.

The mission of the group is to support artists of color, bringing them into the mainstream conversation about culture. The goal is to provide artists with a voice as well as exposure for their artistic works.

Since 2005, Inclusion in Art has been fostering relationships with major art institutions, such as the Oklahoma Visual Arts CoalitionThe Greater Oklahoma City Hispanic Chamber of CommerceOklahoma ContemporaryThe Art HallLiving Arts Tulsa, the Individual Artist of Oklahoma, and the Mainsite Gallery. They have also held programming at the UCO Chesapeake Boathouse and Dunlap and Codding on Film Row. Tulsa Community College is an addition to the list of other partnerships..

Inclusion in Art also provides a mentorship program. The program is a year-long project in which artists of color are provided with the tools and resources to successfully engage Oklahoma’s visual arts community. Artists are selected by a committee and then chosen for the program.

“This program is open to any emerging Oklahoma artist that identifies as a racial/ethnic minority. We define emerging artists as anyone who has just started their career in art, no matter their age.”  

Inclusion in Art’s mentorship is an opportunity held annually for emerging and student artists of color. For more information, visit Inclusion In Art’s Mentorship Program

If your organization is interested in the possibility of exhibiting with The Thomas K. McKeon Center for Creativity, please contact Annina Collier at annina.collier@tulsacc.edu. The Center frequently issues open calls for exhibitions. Contact Cindy Barton at cindy.barton@tulsacc.edu to be notified of future open calls.

(From left to right), Sunee Rice, Raasheda Burnett, Caitlin Varner, Jaiye Farrell, Malcolm Zachariah. (Photo provided by Professor Marjorie Bontemps)
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