Cleveland Black Artists Envision The Real Deal In A First-of-its-kind City-wide Exhibition.
Cleveland, Ohio – 24 June, 2021 – Twelve Cleveland-based African American artists will juxtapose
their artwork with twelve historic and socially significant sites on the east-side of Cleveland. The
artists’ works demonstrate how six “forgotten” communities lost in the racial divide can be
rediscovered and resurrected. Crossroads: Still We Rise, a transformative exhibition presented in
augmented reality (AR) in the gallery and outside is the first of its kind in Cleveland, and will
provide audiences with a unique interactive viewing experience. “We want to utilize immersive
experiences to reveal the invisible, yet “real” memories, histories and experiences layered onto the
urban landscape. This, to me, is how art can be a more relevant part of our lives — by connecting
artists, their artwork, and Cleveland communities to drive dialogue around important issues,” says
The Sculpture Center Executive Director Grace Chin, who took the helm of the organization in
Curated by seasoned artist and community activist Robin Robinson, Still We Rise equally showcases
the stories behind the work, the artists, and the neighborhoods which host them. “I have
witnessed the resilience and fortitude of the residents rise from the systemic erosion of
once-thriving predominantly Black east-side communities. I chose six neighborhoods to showcase
and empower Black artists to bring the viewer face to face with these sites, their proud legacies, as
well as the challenges that confront them today.” Still We Rise explores socio-economic changes in the
Buckeye, Central, East Cleveland, Glenville, Kinsman, Slavic Village neighborhoods and their
influence on the lives of African Americans. One such work by Gwendolyn Garth is “a resurrection” of
a vacant and abandoned space that was once the site of the bustling Majestic Hotel. “My work is a
wake-up call of something that our city planners and civic leaders have not yet realized or
visualized…a return to life of a space that was once a vivacious center of the Central
The exhibition will open on Friday, July 16 in The Sculpture Center galleries with artwork by all
twelve artists accompanied with augmented reality experiences that offer personal backdrops to
each work. Amanda King’s photograph Resurrection, features a young Black boy kneeling in front
of an altar, gazing at the viewer. When viewed in AR, the work is joined by an historic image of Rev.
Martin Luther King, Jr. in a similar pose. AR will also allow Resurrection to appear across the mighty
façade of Glenville’s Cory Methodist Church, pairing the Civil Rights legacy of the community with
the artist’s own racial reckoning.
Opening weekend continues Saturday, July 17 with the outdoor AR exhibition hosted by Nancy
Baker Cahill’s 4th Wall App. Free artist-led trolley tours will visit all twelve sites. Viewers can
experience Charmaine Spencer’s Listening Eye, an African spirit vessel made of clay and soil, at the
gates of Woodland Cemetery. At the gallery visitors will be asked to submit thoughts of healing
into the physical vessel before bringing it to life through AR. The stories will be collected and
incorporated into later works included in the artist’s solo exhibition at The Sculpture Center in
Additional artists in the exhibition include Lawrence Baker, Donald Black, Jr, Marcus Brathwaite,
Hilton Murray, Ed Parker, Shani Richards, Vince Robinson, Gina Washington and Gary Williams.
Crossroads: Still We Rise will close September 25, 2021. Learn more at
sculpturecenter.org/crossroads or follow Facebook and Instagram @thesculpturecenter.
The Sculpture Center exhibitions and programs are free and open to the public through the
generosity of our funders. “The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support The
Sculpture Center, its exhibitions and programs.” said Arts Endowment Acting Chairman Ann Eilers.
“The Sculpture Center is among the arts organizations across the country that have demonstrated
creativity, excellence, and resilience during this very challenging year.” Additional funding made
possible in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts Council
(OAC); Lead program sponsor Dealer Tire; Exhibition sponsors The Bernice and Davis E Davis Art
Foundation, Callahan Foundation, Cleveland Foundation, Cuyahoga Arts and Culture, Dominion
Energy, The George Gund Foundation and StudioTechne.
The Sculpture Center is one of the only cultural institutions providing the critical resources to
sculptors along their journey. Through a year-round program of exhibitions, talks, and educational
events, TSC is a creative oasis and meeting ground where ideas, risk-taking, and artistic dialogue
connect artists, communities and audiences locally and internationally.