FUBU, For Us by Us! Do you remember that dynamic clothing line from the 90’s, bolstering pride in all things… US? Us, meaning some of the most creative, colorful, and cultural people the world has ever known. The most creative in making something out of nothing and making the world think it’s gold. The most colorful in sprinkling the correct amount of flavor on people that makes them want to march to your beat, and most cultural in clinging onto prideful traditions that centuries have dared to try to uproot. US meaning the most creative, colorful, and cultural people WE don’t even know. Why the last sentence?
When buffoonery and bank accounts are all that seem to drive our youth, what other conclusion can be made? Would you believe that a few engineers would be the solution to this culturally dismissive problem? Yes, a mechanical, aeronautical, and electrical engineer fused together to form the Art Brothers at the Zucot Gallery. Troy Taylor, Onaje Henderson, and Omari Henderson are responsible for the only African-American art gallery in the self-proclaimed Black Mecca known as Atlanta. These brothers are fitted with the task of cultivating culture in the day and age of flash and fame.
Art like we have seen before, but lost in our new translation of mobility, is in high gear with works such as the Keeper of the Golden City by Tamara Natalie Madden and Aaron F. Henderson with the piece, Bata the Bajoom Warrior. Both artists found at the Zucot Gallery, not only wow with the sheer attention to every delicate stroke of their paint brush, but draw the viewer into a story behind each piece that connects you to the artist. The Keeper of the Golden City by T. Madden delves into the narrative of dark skinned African-American women, whom at many times in their lives felt as if they were less than. The Bajoom Warrior, actually set in the future, where African-Americans rule a planet in a galaxy far away, boldly reversing the American paradigm of the African-American diaspora.
The background of each piece, these two only to name a few, all came with an intrinsic story that demands the type of dialogue that not only intrigues you but blesses you with a heartfelt feeling of heritage. To that end, this was just the feeling that the Art Brothers wanted illuminating from the essence of many of the works. “We want our gallery to be a cultural investment to the future of African-Americans”, says Onaje Henderson. The young art collector considers his partnership in art as a calling to take the intimidation out of the art collecting experience by bringing purpose to all that have thought the process to be too daunting and unattainable.
Would you visit more art galleries if they were more “user” friendly? Well find out, and visit the Zucot Gallery located in the heart of downtown Atlanta, for a course in collective cultural-ism bound to change your life’s trajectory.
Written By: Sabreen Shabazz-Straker, Contributing writer, The Modern Domestic
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