• MEET THE ARTIST: DAY 5 – SOLOMON ADUFAH

    Mission: Solomon Adufah’s mission is to empower, promote and celebrate the African Culture through his portrait paintings.

    Solomon Adufah was born in Ghana (West Africa) and currently lives in Chicago. His discipline of art is portrait based with very vibrant colors. His potrait paintings captures expressions and emotions of his subjects. More importantly, it celebrates culture and tradition through the unique lives of the individuals he uses as subjects. More often, Africa is portrayed negatively through mass media. Africa is usually referred as disease infested, rampant wars or poverty. Celebrating the culture and tradition of the native people is his way of sharing their wonderful stories with the world.

    Homeland Series continues in the States with exhibitions of portraits paintings from his travel. The exhibitions serves as a plateau to share and educate the audience celebrating the different culture in which the pieces represent. They are also effective tool for cultural diplomacy to spread goodwill in the world and cultural identity. His exhibition of portraits are incorporated into multi-media exhibits featuring videos, artifacts, and the work of the students from the country he has visited.

    For the moment, Solomon Adufah’s work is self-funded. They are supported by sales of his work and the sponsorship of private companies and patrons. On occasion, he has worked on local private portrait commissions to raise more funds. Solomon Adufah would like to further and expand this program of serving and celebrating culture and human life through art. All too often the traditions African culture and the peoples are pushed to the fringes of modern society. His vibrant portraits and exhibitions helps return the beauty and relevancy of the people to a genuine level of social and cultural importance, much to the benefit of us all. His service to the community and helping out in orhanages in Africa is also his way of giving back to his roots.

    To learn more about Solomon’s mission and art please visit www.adufahart.com .

    (Original picture and biography source: www.adufahart.com )

  • MEET THE ARTIST: DAY 4 – MARTHA A. WADE

    Martha A. Wade is a self-taught artist from Chicago currently painting and working from her gallery in the Oak Park Arts District. As the daughter of an artist father, she has always carried a deep passion for art making. Martha would watch her father paint from a young age, and longed for a canvas of her own. She began to teach herself drawing by pausing cartoons on video and copying the image. Today her paintings have a bold and vibrant style that explores mankind’s potential on earth and throughout the universe.

    In her new body of work, Wade creates a fantasy of humans made from stardust, who uplift our spirits by giving us a glimpse of what people can achieve at their highest potential. Her tapestry of famous and everyday people suggest that common grounds exist, where everyone is empowered to fulfill their dreams.

    Once fearful of the “starving artist” stereotype, Wade chose to attain her undergraduate degree in Business Administration from the University of Michigan rather than fine art in 2000. After years of working in the financial services industry, her creative spark could no longer be squelched. Martha had no choice but to make a change and go back to school in the arts. She received her Masters of Art Management from Columbia College Chicago in 2008, where she learned the graphic design, web production, and video skills needed to begin her artistic career on her own.

    Martha then built her own website, and started posting images of her work. The love Wade’s art received online through social media gave her the courage to show more work, and devote her life to painting nearly 5 years ago. Martha Wade’s work can be found in private collections nationally in the United States as well as internationally in Scotland, Ireland, and Sweden.

    ( original biography and picture source: wade create.com )

  • MEET THE ARTIST: DAY 3 – Obi Soulstar

    Born in Chicago, but raised in West Africa — Nigeria to be exact — Obisoulstar is the epitome of a Renaissance Man. His music is like food for the starving senses and water for a withered heart; it reflects a man who has seen a lot, forgotten little, and is not afraid to tell the story.

    His music embraces the sounds of Soul, Blues, Funk, Rock, Afrobeat, Lounge, and Reggae — with a dash of House and Alternative for extra style. Sharing the stage with the likes of Grammy Nominee Kem, Eric Roberson and Reggae Legend Beres Hammond (to mention a few), Obisoulstar merges influences from the likes of Maxwell, Raphael Saadiq, Lenny Kravitz, Meshell Ndegeocello, Jimi Hendrix, Prince, and Fela Kuti (the father of Afrobeat), forming a concoction of melodic delight while promoting unity, love, and spiritual liberation through music.

    Filled with energy and character, he takes his artistry everywhere time travels. He brings his audience with him on a journey, captivating them, while allowing those who share in the experience to escape through the release of spiritual energy. For this, he has been dubbed the “SoulRockinRolla” and the minister of “AFROROCK RELIGION”.

    To learn more about Obi SoulStar and his artistry go to www.obisoulstar.com !

    (Original biography source: www.obisoulstar.com )

  • MEET THE ARTIST: DAY 2 – James Nelson

    Born with the gift to depict real life images onto a piece of paper, James Nelson discovered art at a very young age. His first portrait was a drawing of his mother. He drew every detail, from the crease of the smile. Afraid and uncertain that his mother would unhappily accept the drawing because of the delicate details in her face. She accepted the black and white drawing saying “Draw everything you see son”.

    James Nelson received many awards since the age of 12 for his expertise in illustration, commercial, and visual art. James attended Westinghouse Vocational High School and majored in Commercial Art. He then went on to attend Illinois State University after receiving the All City State Awards Portfolio Winner in 1997. James is no stranger to the world of art. His work has been exhibited in the Museum of Contemporary Art, a featured artist in several art showcases, and other galleries in the Chicago area.

    James decided to begin Soulful Artistry after years of freelancing in Graphic Design, and being commissioned for different works of art. James finds inspiration through other artists, his community, culture, society, and spirituality. His style and body of work is influenced by the Renaissance and Expression movement, and Street Art. He finds portraits captivating and intriguing, and focus on capturing the essence of beauty in radiant and vibrant color schemes. He also decided to assist those who have natural skill sets and talents to encourage them to pursue their dreams, their love, passion, and happiness.

    To get to know James Nelson a little better, check out his website, http://soulfulartistry.com !

    (Original biography source: http://soulfulartistry.com )