Americans citizens have the right to vote, no matter the color of your skin, your sexual orientation or your social economic status. However, there are a few exceptions. In 2020, the justice system continues to disenfranchise many currently or formerly incarcerated people across the country who are disproportionately African Americans and Latinos, because of their criminal status they cannot vote.
Historically, voting rights were not a given to Black people. Our history included many hundred years of suffering which Black people journeyed through to be free. From the stain of brutal slavery, then through the Civil War, to Emancipation to Reconstruction, marked the years of struggle and pain. Through voting-rights campaigns and legal suits from the turn of the twentieth century to the mid-1960s, African Americans made their voices heard as to the importance of the vote. The Civil Rights Movement led by Dr. Martin Luther King and young leaders like John Lewis, taught us how to get into “Good Trouble.” This was the era of protest, and peaceful marching and sacrifice. Many people including people of different ethnic background’s joined together with Black people and fought and died for us to have the right to vote.
This is the 150th anniversary of the 15th amendment and the 55th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act. This year is a time of reflection on both progress that’s been made and work that remains in dismantling barriers to Black and African American individuals exercising their right to vote.
We are here because our ancestors persevered. We honor and celebrate the legacy of or ancestor’s. This country was built by the free slave labor and the creative, agility, of our ancestors. When you vote, you continue the struggle, you continue the fight to remain Free. John Lewis passed the torch over, to a new generation of leaders. I am so proud of the “Black Lives Matter” movement. Young people of all ages are now marching in the streets of America and all over the world for freedom. Tell everybody to get out and vote for a change. Remember the right to vote was paved with bloodshed.
The fiber art quilt is composed of textiles, hand dyed, hand painted fabrics, hand sewn beading and stones and draped and layered details. The eye that is featured in the quilt is adorned with beading and stones. The eye is symbolic of our ancestors, those who passed over. They are watching over us, with tears from our past that light the way for change and a shift in the atmosphere. Let your vote be your protest.
Cynthia Lockhart’s fiber art is infused with a kaleidoscope of diverse influences such as: Nature, fashion, music, travel, and African arts. Lockhart’s textiles are distinguished by their pulsating colors, which simulate the vivaciousness of her African ancestry, and by their irregular, organic shapes. Her fashion and accessories design background provide the perfect platform for creating exquisite three-dimensional artwork. Lockhart hold the distinct honor of having her artwork reviewed and published in the New York Times. Her work is included in the collections of the Cincinnati Art Museum, University of Cincinnati, and private collectors. In addition, The Cincinnati Children’s Hospital commissioned her to create seven pieces of artwork for the T building. Lockhart’s work has been featured in “The Artist Magazine” and many books and catalogues. Noteworthy is her inclusion in the “Encyclopedia of African American Artists” and on the cover of the Fashion Industry’s “Women’s Wear Daily.” As an award-winning artist, she continues to be an active contributor in the design and art community from a local, national, and international perspective. Professor Lockhart has lectured at conferences and museums throughout United States, Japan, Italy and France. Recently, her artwork was featured in a solo show at the Manchester University in Indiana. Professor Lockhart currently teaches Fiber Art Fashion, Art of Jewelry & Leather Accessory Design and Masters of Design Professional Development courses at the College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning at the University of Cincinnati. Her work is featured in Gallery 708, Walnut Street, Cincinnati, OH.