Support the mission of artist Dr. Charles Smith

To all old (and new) friends of the artist and activist Dr. Charles Smith:

For over thirty years Dr. Charles Smith has been a tireless artist, activist, scholar, and educator. The fruits of his labor have culminated in the creation of two unparalleled sites of powerful artistic expression and vision.

The African-American Heritage Museum and Black Veterans’ Archives in Aurora, Illinois and Hammond, Louisiana are repositories of African-American history and sites of resistance, education, and inspiration. For decades, Dr. Smith has given himself wholeheartedly to the work of bringing to light the stories of overlooked figures and events in our country’s history while dedicating much of his time to serving the youth in the communities in which he lives and works.

Funds are urgently needed for Dr. Smith. Generous donations from friends and admirers, especially from those who have benefited from the soulful gift of his powerful voice and his work, will be used for his ongoing operations and to help complete necessary work at the Hammond site including:

-          Rent necessary equipment to clear fallen trees and debris
-          Continue to pay members of the community for their ongoing maintenance  work
-          Increase security
-          Pay for the maintenance of the truck used to transport materials and sculptures
-          Organization and preservation of Dr. Smith’s archive and research materials

And of course, continuing to make sculpture at the African-American Heritage Museum and Black Veterans’ Archive

Please join with friends and admirers worldwide, to support Dr. Charles Smith’s soulful project by contributing to this campaign. Give what you can…every contribution will be most sincerely appreciated and will further his great work.

Why now?
A fastidious researcher, Dr. Smith holds a keen and critical lens up to the records and stories that have become accepted facts; he looks for both patterns and cracks across time and narratives. He bears witness to the suffering of African-Americans and their fight for social and economic equity, beginning with the enslavement of thousands of Africans and continuing to the contemporary and ongoing struggles around police brutality against the African-American communities.

As Dr. Smith continues his historical research and his meditations on news cycles and current events, he uses his sculptures to forefront the issues he feels are most pressing. As an artist, activist, scholar, and educator, Dr. Smith’s work is never done.

Now in his eighth decade, Dr. Smith shows no signs of slowing down.  In this time of reckoning and reconciliation, it is more important than ever to support Dr. Smith’s incomparable work. He stated, “The African-American Heritage Museum and Black Veterans’ Archive is a hospital for our current condition – a new and necessary way to look at art that can help us make the choices and changes we so desperately need.” 

Additional information
The African-American Heritage Museum and Black Veterans’ Archive is also an artist-built environment of international renown, having been written about in national and international magazines. Hundreds of his sculptures are in the permanent collections of institutions including: The John Michael Kohler Arts Center, the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, and INTUIT: Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, Aurora Public Art Commission, Edgewood College, Elmhurst College, Smithsonian Institution-Anacostia Museum and Center for African American History & Culture, Cornucopia Art Museum, Lucy Craft Laney Museum of Black History, Paris Gibson Square Museum, University of Mississippi Museums, Joslyn Art Museum, Lakeland College, University of Central Florida, and Hampton University.

Photo credit: Fred Scruton, untitled (work of Dr. Charles Smith, Hammond, LA), 2015; photograph. Courtesy of the artist


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  • Katherine Jentleson 
    • $100 
    • 1 d
  • Allison Wade 
    • $15 
    • 1 d
  • Melissa Smith 
    • $10 
    • 3 d
  • Hana van der Steur 
    • $50 
    • 3 d
  • Jim Zanzi 
    • $100 
    • 4 d
See all

Fundraising team: Friends and Supporters of Dr. Smith (3)

Gordon Ebbitt 
Raised $775 from 5 donations
New Orleans, LA
Charles Smith 
Janice Hendrick 
Team member
Raised $395 from 4 donations
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