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Vision & Spirit Exhibit Officially Opens During Black History Month At The Gantt Center

Vision & Spirit: African American Art | Works From The Bank Of America Collection was made available for viewing at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African- American Arts + Culture Friday, February 6, 2021. Its official opening to the public will be on Friday, February 19, 2021. This special exhibition, which is part of the Bank of America Art in our Communities® program, is composed of more than 100 visual art pieces spanning 100 years. These paintings, prints, drawings, photographs, sculptures and mixed-media works by forty-eight black artists highlight key moments that reflect the prevailing climate for all African Americans. Vision & Spirit examines how, in spite of using different techniques, each artist shares a unique perspective within the century of black experience.

In selecting work for the exhibition, curator Dexter Wimberly sought out images and concepts that embody the central theme of resilience. Throughout this process he reflected on the social and political times in which each piece of art was created. The show includes photographic portraits of well-known individuals, like Muhammad Ali, John and Alice Coltrane and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., as well as documentation of modern civic life from the Harlem Renaissance and the Civil Rights Movement. Artists also express the theme of resilience in other media, as found in the works of established artists Benny Andrews, Sam Gilliam, Juan Logan, Julie Mehretu, Faith Ringgold and Martin Puryear. The show brings the current conversation in with the works of emerging artists like Chelle Barbour, David Huffman, Corey Pemberton and Raelis Vasquez.

“The idea of resilience is incredibly fitting in our current times,” said David Taylor, President & CEO of the Gantt Center. “As we witness seismic shifts in American life that will undoubtedly have an impact on future art-making, Vision & Spirit gives us a peek into the seminal events of the past that led us to where we are today. To see these moments in time from our present day vantage point gives me hope that our current challenges will one day seem just as evidential of how far we have come.”

Bank of America believes in the power of art to help economies thrive, enrich societies and create greater cultural understanding. As a leader in helping the arts flourish across the globe, Bank of America supports more than 2,000 cultural nonprofits each year. The bank offers their art collection, grown from many legacy financial institutions that are now part of Bank of America, as a resource through Art in our Communities®. Museums and nonprofit galleries may borrow complete exhibitions at no cost. It is through this program that the bank worked with the Gantt Center to curate a substantial collection of works by African American artists.

“Art is an important expression of its creator’s journey, feelings and experiences,” shared Charles Bowman, Bank of America Charlotte Market President. “Since 2009, more than 140 museums worldwide have borrowed exhibitions through Art in our Communities®. Bank of America is pleased to support the Gantt Center through the loan of the works of talented and prolific minority artists.”

Vision & Spirit will host many accompanying programs and events, as well as reimagined digital offerings online to provide opportunities for virtual guests to have an equally impactful experience. Upcoming events include virtual tours, artist talks and a film series. The Gantt Center will also continue to host recurring programs, such as Open Air, Family First and Unmasked, featuring themes and artists from Vision & Spirit. The exhibit will run through July 2021 and will then travel to other museums.

To see the artists included in this exhibition, click/tap here.

About Bank of America In Our Communities

At Bank of America, we’re guided by a common purpose to help make financial lives better, through the power of every connection. We’re delivering on this through responsible growth with a focus on our environmental, social and governance (ESG) leadership. ESG is embedded across our eight lines of business and reflects how we help fuel the global economy, build trust and credibility, and represent a company that people want to work for, invest in and do business with. It’s demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our clients, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocacy groups, such as community, consumer and environmental organizations, to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact. Learn more at, and connect with us on Twitter (@BofA_News).

For more Bank of America news, including dividend announcements and other important information, visit the Bank of America newsroom and register for news email alerts at

About Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture

The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture is a multi-disciplinary arts institution located in the heart of Charlotte, North Carolina. Founded in 1974, the Gantt Center’s mission is to present, preserve and celebrate excellence in the art, history and culture of African-Americans and those of African descent through visual and literary arts, dance music, film, educational programs, theatre productions and community outreach. The Gantt Center features fine art exhibitions from around the world and is home to the nationally celebrated John and Vivian Hewitt Collection of African-American Art, which was generously donated by Bank of America, and is accessible online.

Named for Charlotte civic leader and former mayor Harvey Bernard Gantt, the Gantt Center is housed in an inspired and distinguished award-winning structure designed by architect Philip Freelon, co-designer of the new Smithsonian National Museum for African American History and Culture (NMAAHC). For more information about the Gantt Center and the Initiative for Equity + Innovation, visit

Posted on Monday, February 15, 2021

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