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The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey will host an informal artist introduction and celebratory reception for the women featured in Parvathi Kumar: Everyday Blackness on Saturday, March 26, from 4–6 PM. You can register for the free event by clicking here. This event is open to the public and light refreshments will be served.

Currently on view in VACNJ’s Marité and Joe Robinson Strolling Gallery I the exhibition is made up of portraits of twenty-five women and features quotations from, and brief biographies of, each sitter. Beginning in June 2020, Kumar interviewed and photographed twenty-five Black women in the New Jersey area to showcase their collective courage and resilience. Responding to the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter protests, as well as the global COVID-19 pandemic, the New Jersey-based photographer, wanted to document and share the vast goodness she observed in this group of women—goodness that prevailed over the pain people were feeling.

Through networking and research, Kumar identified women leading ordinary, everyday lives, who were also exceptional in their own ways. Ranging in age from 19 to 86, they represent a broad array of professions and experiences, including author, educator, entrepreneur, activist, CEO, doctor, disability advocate, attorney, environmentalist, and student. Acknowledging the individual challenges they face, Kumar also observed a common thread binding the group together—selflessness and commitment to service that makes them the backbones of their families, communities, and country. She sums it up in the preface to her book Everyday Blackness: Celebrating Exceptional Women “In a world that continues to marginalize and judge people based on physical appearances, these unwitting heroines persevere for the greater good.”

Please direct all questions to Sarah Walko, Director of Education & Community Engagement at swalko@artcenternj.org or 908.273.9121.


March 26, 2022
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM


Visual Arts Center of New Jersey
68 Elm Street
Summit, NJ 07901 United States
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