If conveying a message is one of the functions of an art exhibit, then “Hey Mama” sent a clear message of appreciation to mothers everywhere. “Hey Mama” was a one day art show hosted at the 3rd Ward MLK Center, on April 30th by Lovelady Texas, a creative agency based in Houston.
The show was free to all and featured the artwork of 10 different artists (Allyson Huntsman, Armando Castelan, Irene Antonia Diane Gomez Reece, Alex Hewitt, Jarrid Denman, Diane Benavides Rios, Gisele Parra, WROSIV, KIMMISKI, Kenyah Shabazz). There were also performances by 5 poets and singers (Raie Crawford, KAITO, Raquel Davis, Jay Rose, Lukk G). The work in the show varied; some artists like Jarrid Denman displayed photographs of the mothers in their life, while others like Alex Hewitt and WROSIV painted portraits of their own mothers. As a whole, the show commented on the many themes of motherhood, with paintings memorializing maternal community figures (Kenyah Shabazz) to installations highlighting the personal sacrifice that comes with child birth (Diane Benavides Rios).
“Hey Mama” was organized and curated by ex-Forward Times intern Ashura Bayyan, who is currently building a career in museum administration at the Station Museum of Contemporary Art. He says that the intention of “Hey Mama” was to curate a homage to mothers, and host an art exhibition that felt like a family reunion, dispelling the intimidation and fear that many people associate with museums. The DJ (DJ Elevated) and the caterers (A&K Cakes) both contributed to that family friendly environment, and above all the location of the show proved invaluable to the overall mood.
Photos by: Diane Rios