African American Museum of Nassau County -NOVA Gallery duringErn Miami Art Week

"Art is Business" by Alpha Bruton

Ernani Silva, and Minna Dunn 

The African American Museum of Nassau County participated in the 2015 Miami Art Week, with an installation at KROMA Gallery and Art Space in Coconut Grove.  Minna Dunn, Art Educator and Curator, featured the art of Ernani Silva. 

TAAM of Nassau County mission is to educate and promote understanding  and  appreciation  of  African  American  culture, art  and tradition through education, interpretation, exhibitions, collections, and programs for the enrichment of the public; with an emphasis on Long Island. The museum’s vision is to become the outstanding regional resource for African American historical information.
Overtown Art Africa

In February 1968, Professor Leroy Leonardo Ramsey set up a Black History exhibit at Nassau Community College, in celebration of Black History Month. At February’s end, the exhibit was left in place (due to popular demand) and Professor Ramsey used his personal collection of artifacts to change the exhibit from time to time. Before long, the exhibit outgrew its space and he established the Black History Exhibit Center in a store front at 106-A Main Street, in Hempstead.  In 1984, Nassau County purchased the building at 110 North Franklin Street and Professor Ramsey’s Black History Exhibit Center became the African American Museum of Nassau County and moved into 110 North Franklin in 1985.

TAAM is one of only two African American museums in the northeast. (The other African American Museum is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.)

The African Atlantic Genealogical Society, Inc. (TAAGS) became affiliated with the museum in 1998; making the African American Museum unique as the first museum to house a genealogical society that provides workshops and consultations for the community. 

Under management of TAAGS, the museum provides programming that includes art exhibits and art education, genealogical and historical research, themed exhibits that focus on historical figures and events. 

Ernani Silva was born in Rio de Janeiro, where he encountered many adversities. At an early age of four Ernani displayed artistic talent, but his father discouraged any involvement with the arts. He welcomed the opportunity to relocate to the United States, where he was further encouraged as an artist. Ernani is multi-lingual and well-regarded in an international audience.


Silva developed a distinctive style which reflects his Brazilian cultural influence of Native, African lineage. His creations are an amalgam of dance, rhythm, music and color which voice his rich mystical heritage and history. Silva is passionately attracted to the expression and emotion of his traditional music and the spiritualism of Candomble ceremonies and rituals. Silva’s palette is the alchemy of intoxicating opaque colors, as well as incorporating the use of heavy impression to create vibrant lyrical dancing figures. 

His work speaks a sensual language, which gives the viewer a glimpse of his intense celebrated reality, through an intoxicating palette of opaque colors and expression. He has extensive exhibition, teaching and curatorial experience in a wide variety of venues over a period of 40 plus years. His award winning work is on display throughout various galleries worldwide as well as donated to museums.