A Collection of Changes: Clarence Heyward

A Block Gallery Exhibition Featuring Works From the Municipal Art Collection

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Artwork Statement About the Artist

Artwork Statement

Artwork by Clarence Heyward

Liberty Enlightening the World
Clarence Heyward

Acrylic and gold leaf on canvas
48” x 30"

Clarence Heyward's current work addresses racial inequality and the plight of the black man in today's society. He is a figurative painter and collagist. His work is a visual narrative of faces and figures who are often dismissed in the realm of fine art. Much of his work is inspired by the many facets of African American culture. It is a combination of portraiture, graphic design, and “soul”. He often embeds text into his work, creating a direct dialogue between the work and the viewer, preserving a narrative that continues into future generations. His work is an exploration of his culture. Clarence’s artistic practice is based on the questioning of his identity and circumstance. He seeks ways to engage in dialogues that ultimately leave him connected to those who experience his work. His work is personal. Although creating from his perspective, the human element present in the work creates a connection for all.

About the Artist

Clarence Heyward was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, Clarence Heyward is a painter and collagist. He relocated to North Carolina to study Art Education at North Carolina Central University. His work investigates cultural truths, challenges stereotypes, and questions identity. Clarence believes it’s important to “paint his truth” and uses persons of color as subjects in his work as homage to his culture. Beginning his journey as a full-time artist in 2019, he is best known for his dynamic and fresh take on figurative art. Heyward’s work has been featured in venues including the 21c Museum of Durham, CAM Raleigh, and galleries including Block Gallery, Raleigh, the Cary Gallery of Fine Arts, and the Triangle Cultural Art Gallery. He was the recipient of The Brightwork Fellowship residency at Anchorlight in 2020 and the Emerging Artist in Residence at Artspace, Raleigh in 2021.

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Stacy Bloom Rexrode
Curator of Exhibitions and Collections, Raleigh Arts

Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources
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