Renee Baker interview with W.IN.E TV

"Art is Business"

Published on Apr 1, 2013
Ms. Renee Baker, composer, conductor, violinist, violist, founder and artist director of the Chicago Modern Orchestra Project. International and US audiences have enjoyed Ms. Baker's conducting and original compositions, while experiencing her fascinating concert experiences. In this straightforward W.IN.E TV interview, Ms. Baker states she started her own orchestra so she could hear her own original compositions, while exploring other's repertories. She encourages women to see no limits, set no limits, and to enjoy the journey while following their bliss in life. Also, Ms. Baker encourages women to take their rightful place in the arts to help smooth out the rough edges in society.

Sojourner Truth Sculpture Destroyed in Sacramento CA

Repost City of Sacramento Past Perfect Online

Post image for Sojourner Truth ~ 13th & K Update 1/15/13: I am dismayed to report that the Sojourner Truth sculpture was recently vandalized. The sculpture was pushed off of the pedestal and broke in pieces on the ground. It is still unclear whether the sculpture can be repaired. I’ve included a photo of the broken sculpture at the bottom of this post.
Nearly 7′ tall standing with dignity and a flare of her skirt, this unembellished but powerful sculpture is a testament to the woman who inspired her (1).
Sojourner Truth (1797-1883) was a former slave who escaped to freedom and became an activist contributing passionately in the fight for abolition and women’s rights (2). Among many other remarkable events of her life she was the first black person to win a court case against a white man (3), and she once bared her breasts in a meeting room to silence accusations that she was a man (accusations likely stemming from her nearly 6′ stature and non-demure manner) (4).

The Artist:
Through her artwork, Elizabeth Catlett (1919-2012) also spent her life fighting injustices against African Americans and women (5). Targeted during the McCarthy era for her politics, she moved to Mexico and for a period of time was denied re-entry into the U.S. (despite being a citizen) (6).
In a clip of the video called, Sculpting the Truth, she says, “I admire things I think are true. I admire things I think are just.” The social implications of her work was always the primary focus of her art:
“I learned how you use your art for the service of people, struggling people, to whom only realism is meaningful.” (7)
“I have always wanted my art to service my people — to reflect us, to relate to us, to stimulate us, to make us aware of our potential.” (8)
Some of her most popular works include: Malcolm Speaks For Us, The Sharecropper, Negro Es Bello, Survivor, Dancing, Two Generations, Black is Beautiful, Latch Key Child, Madonna, The Singing Head, Recycling Nude, and The Seated Woman (9).
At age 95, she completed one of her last sculptures, a life-size bronze sculpture of gospel legend, Mahalia Jackson (10) [Side note: Sacramento is hosting its first production of the highly acclaimed show, Mahalia: A Gospel Musical, through 9/23].
I think Sojourner would be proud to have been sculpted by Catlett, her sister in truth and justice.

Below is the photo of the recently vandalized sculpture (1/15/13).
Title: Sojourner
Artist: Elizabeth Catlett
Date: 1999
Media: Mexican Limestone
Location: 13th & K

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Artist of the Month Caryl Henry Alexander

Caryl Henry Alexander

Caryl Henry Alexander is Creative Director at Big Bang She conceives and directs visual arts projects with a focus on creative literacy, community collaboration and arts integrated academic curriculum. Her projects have been successful with multi-generational, multicultural and interfaith communities in diverse settings. Her paintings and installations are exhibited internationally. Ms Henry Alexander is a certified Urban Farmer and she grows organic veggies for her family.

Artist With a Purpose
"Now is the time to ante up your Creative Currency"

We ask people to write their dreams on a chalkboard and then be photographed holding them. These photos capture each individual’s current reality and future aspirations.
Visitors were invited to create a digital postcard by using their cell phones to take pictures of themselves with their faces in the mural cutouts and share their fun at the event.

We will through this creative engagement support participants in developing a greater understanding of the role that a healthy lifestyle is a key to achieving their dreams.
Coming to Chicago in August 22nd 2013 during the Glenwood Arts Festival- hosted by Marianna Buchwald of the International Art Group. If you are reading this and want to offer up a project, during this seasons Farmers Markets, contact Marianna at,, subject line: Rainbow Plate