( ENSPIRE INTERVIEWS ) KavionArt: The Painter Who Teaches Black History
Talking to Kavion Robinson, featured painter at current Black History Exhibition at the Smithville Mansion Annex Gallery organized by the Underground Railroad Museum of Burlington County can have one feeling ignorant to their own history. His artwork, which essentially focuses on black history from Africa to his birthplace, Jamaica reflects the painter himself, a teacher to the core. ENSPIRE Magazine called him to speak about his current exhibition at said gallery which began Feb.2 up to Feb. 26 but left with a rich history lesson instead.
When asked who inspired him, his reply was life and Marcus Garvey, a national hero of Jamaica and who many knew for his enormous contribution to the Pan-Africanism Movement. Kavion stated that many Americans are not knowledgeable of Garvey’s great contributions to the civil rights movement. He also stated that they aren’t enough good paintings of Marcus Garvey and of black history in general. Therefore, Kavion’s artistic career focus is to produce as many accurate but appealing art of historical figures and events.
ENSPIRE Magazine upon doing background research have seen that Kavion has done several pieces of Marcus Garvey. When asked why his reply was “I felt like I haven’t perfected what he represented. I understand his message and I needed my painting to reflect that. My latest painting of him comes closest to my vision.” And what a potent piece it is. His latest painting includes Marcus Garvey’s speech on the cover of Marcus’ newspaper “Negro World”. This piece was specifically created for this exhibition.
Kavion will be showcasing thirteen more pieces at Black History exhibition. His work ranges from music to politics to sports for both genders. Some of his paintings include original work of infamous poet Maya Angelou, Haile Selassie l to the 2016 US Women’s Olympic Gold Team. His portfolio is a powerful pack of knowledge, one aimed to remind, reinforce and rearrange a race that has forgotten their royal lineage. Kavion ends the conversation with these words “We are using art to light the way. The youths need to know about their lineage and what it really means or they will stay bound to the limitations of their space and time. Knowledge is key. Come experience a teaching exhibition of black art.”
That resonated with what we do at ENSPIRE. Knowledge is definitely the key to inspire the change this race needs. We implore you to get out and see the rich works of art by Kavion Robinson, Lavett Ballard, Leonard Ingram, Alonzo Jennings, Joe Speight, Donald Stephens, and Vera Wright in this exhibition or at www.kavionart.com. In the meanwhile, the team has some history to catch up on.
Be sure to follow KavionArt on IG:@Kavionart