THE NEW NEGRO HAS NO FEAR, is the title of my thesis for my Master of Fine Arts candidacy. This body of work focuses on the heroic stature of Marcus Garvey and my contemporary reflection on the philosophy and principles of the UNIA (United Negro Improvement Association) and its founder. In my artwork I try to convey the story of Garvey and the UNIA by removing the figure and focusing more on simplistic yet timeless imagery like boats, chairs, cars and articles of clothing. In many paintings I explore the significance each object that is being depicted as pieces to the story that is the UNIA. A lot of the imagery used is taken from photographs found online and visually reinterpreting the imagery to follow my art’s thematic purpose. I use a pastel palate of yellow’s, pink’s, blues and bright greens and reds to relate directly to Garvey’s Caribbean heritage, whereas other paintings have a clean hard edge that lends itself to modern abstract expressionism. As a contemporary artist, abstract expressionism reminds me of the glitchy digital world we rely on for information and communication. It lends itself to my visual vocabulary, to share my beliefs on the importance of the UNIA to others of my generation and younger. With each painting arriving closer to marriage of abstraction and surrealism. Each painting is a feeling/emotional point where my intelligence, my life experience and my artistic skills came together to produce each artwork.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
African American painting--Themes, motives; Mixed media painting--Themes, motives; Garvey, Marcus, 1887-1940--Influence; Universal Negro Improvement Association--Influence
Department, Program, or Center
School of Art (CAD)
Spriggs, Abiose, "The New Negro Has No Fear" (2021). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus