Soul Glow: A Black Experience

January 20-February 18

“My most recent work is a response to discoveries made while exploring the notion of the ‘black experience.’ The objective continues to be the use of memory as a spark toward an investigation, which could lead me to reconsider issues in new ways. The difference is that the more recent work is anchored in a more formal aesthetic.

My goal was to take a break from work that, at times, seemed laden with cultural symbolism. A shift from the literal could possibly bring clarity. My hope was to position myself in a more fertile place for exploration and discovery. I have found from past experiences that my use of abstraction always seemed to lead me to such a place, eventually revealing a kind of essence of what I’m attempting to communicate. This is very important as I continue on the path of exploring identity.

While constructing the more literal work, I was constantly making visual connections to my interest in ancient architecture, modern design, and abstract painting; more importantly, these were interests that were visually apparent in my not so recent work. As my work in the studio transitions from being more like the construction of objects and symbols toward a more immediate, intuitive, abstracted approach, certain shapes and designs are becoming more prevalent than others.

Lately, I have become obsessed with circles and chevron-like shapes. I’m beginning to see them as symbols that represent the black condition in America. Maybe the circle represents the vicious cycle that blacks find themselves in due to social-economic and racial issues. Maybe the chevron-like shape creates a directional flow; representing past, present and the future of black in America.” – Darius Hill

Darius Hill is Chair of the Visual Arts Department at the Alabama School of Fine Arts. He holds a BFA in printmaking from the Atlanta College of Art and an MFA in studio art from the University of Alabama. He is an exhibiting artist, participating in shows throughout the Southeast including New Vision Gallery, Atlanta, GA; the University of Montevallo, Montevallo, AL; and the Crossroads Initiative, New Orleans, LA. Hill’s work is represented in many collections including museum, corporate, and private, throughout the U.S. He has earned several honors and awards including Operation New Birmingham Best in Show Award at the Magic City Art Connection and he was awarded an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Alabama State Council on the Arts. He was one of 13 Alabama printmakers selected to work with the University of Montevallo’s Big Print project. Work generated from the project traveled to major museums throughout the state of Alabama. Hill’s work has been selected by many juried exhibitions such as the Red Clay Survey, Huntsville and the Energen Exhibition, Birmingham. His work has been reviewed in publications such as Art Papers, Birmingham Magazine, B-Metro Magazine, Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Birmingham News.

Darius Hill,
Darius Hill, <em>A Spade By Any Other Name</em>
Darius Hill, <em>A Spade By Any Other Name - Detail</em>

Darius Hill, <em>What's Your Angle Jive Turkey</em>
Darius Hill, <em>What's Your Angle - Installation</em>
Darius Hill, <em>Wheels of Steel</em>

This exhibition has been made possible by The Daniel Foundation of Alabama and grants by the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts.