In recognition of Women’s History Month, “New Freedom: Images of Women in Early African American History” by Atlanta artist, Charmaine Minniefield, opens March 1 at the Auburn Avenue Research Library.

The art celebrates female strength from post-emancipation to after the turn of the century in works on canvas, fabric and paper. The exhibit also features images that were influenced by the Selena Sloan Butler papers, a special collection housed in the Archives Division of the Library celebrating female leadership in education and business.

The exhibit is housed in the Carey/McPheeters Gallery at the library which is located at 101 Auburn Avenue,
Atlanta, Ga., 30303.

Minniefield is an Atlanta-based artist and arts administrator. Her work explores African and African-American ritual from a feminist perspective. Her images draw from “ancestral memory” or indigenous traditions as seen throughout the Diaspora and from her personal connection to women who have played a major role in her life.

Her portraits of gargantuan women, often painted in bold colors and patterns, are influenced by her relationship with her mother, whom she remembers as being larger than life.

With a degree in Fine Art from Agnes Scott College, Minniefield has served the Atlanta area as an arts administrator for nearly 20 years, holding positions with such arts organizations as the National Black Arts Festival, the High Museum of Art and the Fulton County Arts Council.

“Charmaine Minniefield takes the viewer into the spiritual realm and holds them there. Her work converses with the ancestors as they guide her brushes…There are many lessons to be learned from this gifted artist. Her work is magic,” says fellow visual artist Lynn Marshall-Linnemeier.

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