Photo provided by Adrienne Brown-David. Credit: Adrienne Brown-David

Last Friday, Pencil On Paper gallery hosted a VIP collectors night event to showcase their newest artist’s collection, Adrienne Brown-David “Taken Aback by My Own Beauty: Identity as Rebellion”

The very first thing I felt when I entered the room was the love she has for her subjects, which in a lot of cases, are her children.

Adrienne is a multi-disciplinary artist who hails from St. Louis, MO and graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Currently she resides in a small town in Mississippi which is where she lives with her husband and raises her kids. I asked her what inspires her the most, and unapologetically, she referred to her babies.

I just love capturing them as they grow. I like to see their evolution through my work. But what I like to portray most is their freedom…. I grew up in the city… so with my kids growing up in a totally different environment, I can see how their experiences are so much different than mine. It’s important for people to see Black children in that perspective.

Adrienne Brown-David
DW CEO Jess Washington with artist Adrienne Brown-David’s daughters.

I also asked which pieces from this collection were her favorite. As expected, she pointed at two different works, one of each featuring her daughters.

“I just love this one because it shows who my daughters really are. If you know them, you’ve seen this look before. There’s no mistaking… this is who they are!”

Adrienne Brown-David

During the event, I asked others what their favorites were and why. A crowd favorite was this portrait of a woman lying down and listening to music through headphones with her eyes closed. “You just don’t really see art with Black people actually resting” Miranda McClellan of DFW Black Arts.

(L) Dr. Valerie Gillespie with artist (R) Adrienne Brown-David

I also spoke with Dr. Valerie Gillespie on why she chose Adrienne Brown-David’s collection.

I first saw her work about 4 years ago and I was like “whoa!!!” I knew we had to have her work here. I’m just so excited for her.

Dr. Valerie Gillespie, owner of Pencil On Paper Gallery

Celebrations of “Taken Aback by My Own Beauty: Identity as Rebellion” continued Saturday with a packed house full of artists and art enthusiasts alike. Adrienne also engaged the crowd with a Q&A on her work and what to see in the future. Be sure to stop by Pencil On Paper gallery now and check out this amazing exhibit.

Jess Washington is the CEO and Director of Finance for the Dallas Weekly. Her job is to oversee company operations, develop strategic relationships both in the community and for marketing service partnerships.