My dear friend and sister-in-Chirst, Nineveh got married last year, May.
My sister and I traveled to attend the wedding.
We landed in Charlotte, NC with a list of places to visit. The city was still on shut down. Everywhere we went was pretty much empty- outside of the church.
We landed early, had breakfast then drove around the empty city looking at construction sites and talking about gentrification (we even saw one site having a union meeting. There was a lot of shouting that filled up the sound for several blocks).
Finally we had brunch at Sister Wanda’s favorite vegan spot: Fern, Flavors from the Garden.
We were really tired by the time we got to Ratcliffe’s Flowers, a beautiful garden with structures and gorgeous plants. We didn’t even stop to smell the flowers.
The Harvey B. Gantt Center was the next stop. We heard about Mr. Gantt while sitting in the airport and looking for places to visit.
A Black architect and Charlotte’s first African-American mayor…
When we walked into the center, we read the first plaque on the wall dedicated to two professors Bertha Maxwell and Mary Harper who taught in the 1960’s and were very aware at that time of the importance of the need to preserve African American History.
Next we were directed to walk up the steps where we viewed two galleries.
There was an entire exhibit about the riots of 2020 which I thought maybe the curator could have saved the show for a later time. I felt it was too soon to walk around and look at images of riots that we just witnessed last year. To see images in a gallery that are also everywhere else in the media seemed redundant. I think sometimes when an artist wait to show their work, the impact is greater.Timing is everything.
Next we saw a photo exhibit that included work from artist I knew like Benny Andrews and Charles White. All the images were own by Chase Bank-another hot topic to discuss along with the riots- a White institution lending a Black institution their possession of African American art.
I took a photo of the quote below by Whitfield Lovell. I thought it gave a great perspective of African Americans as human; he reminds us that people aren’t the struggle that they face, they are loved and most of all, they are somebody.
Overall it was very informative and we were all glad we went.
Of course we stopped in the store and I looked for something for my students. The good thing is it was filled with children books so I added a couple to my library.
Next we made a trek back home where we rested and failed to keep our promise of not being late to another friend’s wedding.