Columbus Museum of Art

Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson: Ongoing Catalogue of Art and Exhibitions

Return to results page »Mt. Vernon Ave., North Side of the Street, 1900-1957, Memory Map, Page 1

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Curator’s comments

This set of four Memory Maps spans a long period of time and includes historical events, such as the parades commemorating Marcus Garvey (1887-1940) that took place in the early 1920s. Garvey, a Jamaican-born black nationalist, believed that African Americans would always be second-class citizens in this country, so he encouraged them to emigrate to Africa. There were Marcus Garvey chapters all over the country, including one on the corner of Mt. Vernon and Champion avenues in Columbus. The memory maps also hold Robinson's own childhood recollections of encountering the Ice Man, the Brownyskin Man, and the Train Man on the street, of buying live chickens at the Chicken House, of sketching on the street, and of watching movies at the Cameo Theater for ten cents.

Artist’s comments

I wanted to save the characters who lived in the area, and who were very much a part of the culture that was ingrained there. I first went through the city directories to pick up every business or every home that was on Mt. Vernon Avenue. I also wanted to show where Emerson Burkhart and Roman Johnson set up their easels and painted right next to each other. Mt. Vernon was for the working people. That's where everyone went to shop and let their hair down. It was a really wonderful community. The serpents that form the border for these scenes protect the community. (Symphonic Poem p. 114)

Visitors’ comments

Exhibition history

Symphonic Poem, CMA 2002 and tour 2006-07

Category of Work