Wednesday, September 9, 2015

[Press Release] Art at the Y presents "(In)Visible Men", Paintings by Ricardo André Lewis

Press Release
For Immediate Release
September 8, 2015

For media inquiries, contact: Megan Flowers, 
University YMCA Communications Director [, 217-337-1500]

Art at the Y presents
(In)Visible Men
Paintings by Ricardo André Lewis

On view in Murphy Gallery of the University YMCA 
from September 17, 2015 to October 31, 2015

Art @ the Y is pleased to present (In)Visible Men, paintings by Bloomington artist Ricardo André Lewis in the Murphy Gallery of the University YMCA from September 17, 2015 to October 31, 2015. 

Art @ the Y will host the opening reception of (In)Visible Men on Thursday, September 17 from 5pm to 7pm at the University YMCA, 1001 S. Wright Street, Champaign, IL. Ricardo Lewis will give a talk about his artwork during the reception at 5:30pm. Light refreshments will be served. The opening reception is a good opportunity for the Champaign-Urbana community to learn more about the artist’s work in person.

Robert II.jpg
Image above: “Robert II” by Ricardo Lewis

(In)Visible Men is a series of life-size portrait paintings focused on Black males and the attempt to bring visibility to a social group that has been historically marginalized. Since the birth of this country, Black men have appeared and disappeared from view depending upon the political, economic or entertainment needs of the dominant culture.

Ricardo André Lewis’ art is about challenging the viewer to internalize the interconnectedness between themselves and Black men. In it, Lewis is asking the viewer to pause while attempting to see Black men without a narrative or judgment; to quiet inner dialogues that have arisen from how this group has been defined. The men in his art are presented with limited visual cues that people use to make assumptions and stereotypes. Without these visual cues and backgrounds, the viewer is left with the encounter they are presented, the proximity they allow between themselves and the subjects, and their personal comfort levels arrived from the engagement.

Rick (1).jpg

About the artist: Ricardo André Lewis is an artist who has worked in higher education administration for 30 years. He received a Bachelor’s of Arts degree at Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina in 1984 and a Master’s of Science degree from Illinois State University in 1987 as well as completing 18 hours post-master’s studies in education administration at Illinois State University. Ricardo worked in university residence halls for more than 15 years in a variety of live-in and central office administrative positions. He also worked two years as director for multicultural affairs and 11 years as Associate Dean of Students.

"Painting is my journey on a path of mindfulness. As I’m painting, everything dissolves leaving only the breath and the brushstrokes." -Ricardo Lewis

About Art@theY: Some of the most profound insight, critique, and creative thinking around the issues which comprise the mission of the Y happen in and around the arts. Art @ the Y seeks to engage issues of social justice, international understanding, environmental activism, faith and cultural understanding through quality arts programming. Art @ the Y includes a revolving exhibition space in Murphy Gallery, featuring artists whose work speaks to the mission of the Y and performing arts events throughout the year. Art @ the Y is an initiative of the University YMCA. All Art at the Y events are free and open to the public.  

Murphy Gallery:
Hours: Mondays-Thursdays from 9am to 9pm
Fridays from 9am to 5pm

Location: 1001 S. Wright St., Champaign, IL
Admission: Free and open to the public

Bus Lines: Yellow, Navy, Blue, Silver, Brown, Illini
Nearby Bus Stops: Transit Plaza, Wright & Chalmers, Armory & Wright


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