Liberation, freedom, beautiful and immaculate are just a just some of the words used to describe black art at the second annual Black Arts Matter Celebration, an event that took place Feb. 16, 2018, at the Robin Theater in downtown Lansing. This celebration was orchestrated to showcase the black talent in the city and highlight some people who have contributed to the advancements of arts for the black community in Lansing.
Mikeyy Austin, 21, the coordinator of the event said it is important for black artists to have a space to do what they love.
There was no charge, but donations could be made for the Arts Matter Scholarship Found that allows kids to be creative without worrying about financial resources for school.
Austin said the event can grow bigger by incorporating all form of art because when we talk about art it’s not just music, it’s not just dance, it’s all form.
“Last year was predominantly music this year we were able to incorporate dance, we had comedy, poetry and we had music,” he said. “As we continue to grow and highlight more vendors like Curlitude who is a black-owned business and really just highlight all forms of the art in a central location, I really think it’s going to grow.”
Amongst some of the performers was Mikeyy Austin and his band Happy Medium.
“My biggest motivation is to continue to make platforms that I didn’t have growing up for youth,” said Austin.
Many people came out in support of this event from all age groups.
“It’s a nice way to meet new people who are like-minded,” spectator Karyn Moore, 24, said.
When the event was over and it was time to go home, many people lingered back to fellowship with one another.
“We really come for this part right here (the end) to network and catch up with people,” Moore said.
Hakeem Weatherspoon, 21, said a lot of his motivation comes from his upbringing.
“Never believe the sky’s the limit, one thing we learned is that science tells us there’s space, there’s galaxies, there’s stars, and that’s space for you to literally dream bigger,” Hakeem said.
He also said that he believes if you can breathe, move ligaments, anything, then you have talent.
To find out more information about upcoming events you can visit Reo Town Sessions.