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Alan Burgess

    The artwork of Alan Burgess (above) is featured as part of the current exhibit A Love Letter to Count Basie: From The Great Migration to The Harlem Renaissance. 

     A cascade of literary giants of the Harlem Renaissance are the stars of this colorful collage. Burgess, who grew up in Red Bank, New Jersey, is the Creative Director of Benduka Arts in Los Angeles, California.  

     Specializing in photography, Burgess, with a salute to Africa, created a collage that includes African inspired covers of periodicals and books, including Opportunity magazine, published by the National Urban League, the NAACP's The Crisis Magazine and The Blacker the Berry by Wallace Thurman.

     Burgess, a graduate of Brookdale Community College, where he studied Radio, Television & Film added that part of his repertoire to the exhibit, authoring its extensive Harlem Renaissance narrative. Thie exhibit runs through January 2021   

   Julia Rivera is a gifted artist and sculptor who infuses political commentary into her work.  

   Rivera was born in the Bronx in 1965, and her career as a student of art and artist has taken her around the globe. She attended Escuela de Artes Plásticas in Puerto Rico. 

    Rivera received her MA in 17th-century painting and restoration at the Studio Arts College International, Florence, Italy. Rivera's work is in numerous permanent collections around the globe in Texas, Madrid, and Paris. 

    The T. Thomas Fortune Cultural Center is proud to have in its permanent collection a piece by Rivera titled Enough. A title that speaks for itself. 

Julia Rivera - Warrior.jpg

Julia Rivera


Lavett Ballard

     Lavett Ballard was commissioned to create an installation of T. Thomas Fortune and her exquisite work is one of the most remarked upon pieces at the center.   

    Ballard is an artist, art historian, curator, and author.  She was commissioned to create the cover for the Time Magazine special Woman of the Year double edition in 2020.

 Her work has also been in film productions, exhibited at Rush Arts Philadelphia, and other prestigious galleries, museums across the nation. 

      She is known for her diverse collection  of people of African descent by using formal elements of paint, charcoal, oil pastel, fibers, and collage. She combines these elements with reclaimed items to express remarkable themes of history, colorism, Afro-futurism and feminine beauty.




     Ballard was named by Black Art in America as one of the Top 10 Female Emerging Artists to Collect.  Her work is also a part of prominent collections including the African American Museum of Philadelphia, the Colored Girls Museum, the Petrucci Family Foundation Collection and the private collections of Grant and Tamia Hill.

​     Her interest in themes of History, Colorism, Afro-futurism & feminine beauty,  translates to visual narratives of people of African descent.

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