Archival Pigment Print by Lenny Foster
(18in. x 24in.)
"The Spirit inspired series; “Street Saints” is a series of portrait interpretations of Catholic Saints of African descent. I first discovered these Saints while doing a little research on St. Augustine de Hippo, who was from the Hippo region of North Africa. It was after this portrait, during the time of Covid shutdown in St Augustine, that I had more encounters with some of the un-housed folks that would pass the gallery. It was during this time they were more visible, felt freer to move about and that I began to have more direct contact with them. The people on the street typically have to deal with life and needs and lack, one day at a time. A lot of us then because of the imposed shut downs, layoffs, lack of resources, we too had to live a day at a time…what a concept! These folks are often viewed as people to be afraid of, looked down upon and or avoided.
With this project, it is my aim to look beyond their circumstances, beyond their appearance and what mental illness and or addiction they may be suffering from. It’s easy to see the saintly in people when they are put up on a Spiritual pedestal or look and talk a certain way. The opportunity now for me is to connect with and look upon these “brothers and sisters” as walking divinity, to see their inner “Saint”. My hope is that it will inspire more connectedness, more tolerance, love, compassion, empathy and kindness toward the un-housed, at least for me and hopefully for others. The St. Johns Cultural Council generously funds the Street Saints series. Proceeds from sales will go to The St. Johns County Homeless Coalition and the St. Francis House. We greatly appreciate the St. Augustine Art Association for allowing this work and the work of brilliant fellow artists: Brandon Santiago, Alexter Albury and Gerald Branch to exhibit this Soul Collective exhibition!"
Artwork purchased online can be picked up AFTER the exhibit ends, on or after January 2 & 3, 2024 -- or shipped to the buyer (ALL SHIPPING COSTS TO BE PAID BY THE BUYER).