Variation Upon A Theme: Song of the Underground Railroad

  • major support from the Ian and Mimi Rolland Family Foundation

October 19, 2013 - March 9, 2014

Johnny Coleman creates multisensory installations often combining salvaged and handcrafted objects, fragrant materials, and sound elements.  In Variation Upon a Theme: Song of the Underground Railroad, Coleman will completely alter a gallery and explore this story of journey.  "I am thinking of the procession of spirits seeking freedom as both a historical reference to the Underground Railroad, and as an ongoing process a freedom that is hard won, and must be granted to one's self, rather than legislated by an entity of the state."

February 6, 12:15pm
1st Thursday Gallery Talk

Enhance your experience and broaden your perspective of this exhibit with a tour and gallery talk, given by a knowledgable museum docent. Free with gallery admission.

February 22, 1-5pm
Underground No More: A Symposium of the Underground Railroad
Go deeper into the heart of Johnny Coleman's Song of the Underground Railroad installation with an afternoon of thoughtful and inspiring discussion featuring Coleman and some of Fort Wayne's most respected minds in African-American history. Free with gallery admission ($1 for Last Saturday Dollar Day)
Presented in collaboration with the African/African American Historical Society and Museum, and Three Rivers Institute of Afrikan Art and Culture (TRIAAC).

About Johnny Coleman

Johnny Coleman is a sculptor/installation artist and Associate Professor of Art and African American Studies. He is from Southern California, and received his BFA from the Otis Art Institute of the Parsons School of Design, and his MFA from the University of California at San Diego. He has created sound installations for MOCA Cleveland, William Cannon Art Center (Carlsbad, CA), Akron Museum of Art, Hallwalls Gallery (Buffalo, NY), SPACES Gallery (Cleveland), inSITE 94 (San Diego), William King Art Center (Abington, VA), Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum, Centro Cultural (San Diego, CA), Randolph Street (Chicago, Ill), California Center for the Arts, and David Zapf Gallery (San Diego). Additionally, he has performed on stage at BAM, Majestic Theater: Next Wave Festival 96, and his work is included in the permanent collection of The San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, The California Center for the Arts, and numerous private collections.


311 Main Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46802
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Gallery Hours Tuesday - Saturday: 10am-6pm
Thursday: 10am-8pm
Sunday: 12-5pm
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