Grant Amount: $25,000 over one year
Award Category: Advancing the Field Support
Zeal Eva’s (she/her/hers) artwork explores the intersections of the natural world and the built environment to highlight shared Black experiences and document the present. Zeal Eva will use the $25,000 grant to organize the three-day “Afro Art Fest” in September 2023. The festival will take place in the Garfield, Larimer and Homewood neighborhoods of Pittsburgh. The goal of the event is to uplift the Black community, provide resources, create space for underground talent to be put in the forefront and to showcase the progress already made by individuals within the African diaspora of Pittsburgh.
"Through photography, painting, illustration, and sculpture, my personal artist practice explores the intersections of the natural world and the built environment to highlight shared Black experiences and document the present," says Zeal. "My practice is one that connects closely to home--whether that be of my past, current, or future spaces, and draws inspiration from moments within my personal life, roots and culture. I am a visual storyteller who celebrates the Black experience through artworks that bring to life the feeling of nostalgia and a vision for what a healthier future for black people will look like."
Through the platforming of multidisciplinary Black arts in the region, Zeal says she looks forward to providing learning opportunities in various forms of Black creativity, which will serve as starting points for deeper investigation for attendees. Lastly, by creating a space in which spoken word poets, instrumentalists, musicians, dancers, thespians, black filmmakers and educators can gather and showcase their talents, the festival will be injecting back into Pittsburgh a celebration of Black arts and culture that is needed now more than ever.