by Taroue Brooks
What inspired you to create “Fight On” coffee table book?
A conversation with my son about one of the many student jobs I had at Tuskegee Institute became the inspiration for my spiritual series. One painting and a great deal of research lead to over 50 paintings and a book that highlights the overwhelming contributions of the African American spirituals.
What is your favorite piece of art that you have featured in the book and why?
I’m not sure I have a favorite painting. In reviewing the work my primary goal was to create images that would best tell the story often hidden in the lyrics.
What message would like for people to get when experiencing your coffee table book?
I hope experiencing the book will introduce some and reacquaint others to the power of these songs created by slave poets that we call African American spirituals. Also, I hope the book becomes more just another coffee table but a resource for the exploration of African American history.
Why did you decide to become an artist?
I started creating art at a very young age and I just never stops. It became a part of who I am.
What inspires you to create?
I am inspired by African and African American culture and history, social issues, music, and everyday learning.
Where can people purchase your book?
Fight On- A Visual Interpretation of African American can be purchased at www.zucotgallery.com
What’s next for you in the world of art?
I am currently working of a series I started sometimes ago that deals with an exploration of “Black Rage” the cause and effect.
Fight On by Aaron F. Henderson artist and author is a visual interpretation of the African American Spirituals and brings together three dynamic elements to tell the story of the African American Spirituals Tradition: Sixty-two paintings from a series by artist Aaron F. Henderson, the lyrics of fifty-six spiritual songs, and narrative writings by scholars of art and culture, and Henderson himself. The elements come together to make this more than an art book, a lyric book, autobiography or cultural commentary. Fight On is a celebratory document of African American Culture, giving evidence to how Black People in a nation that grew rich and powerful on the strength of their unpaid labor survived and liberated themselves.