The Black Arts Festival: Cultural cuisine for the eyes and palette

By Allen A. Buchanan, Staff Writer

ST. PETERSBURG – The intersection of the Deuces and Ninth Avenue South sprung alive with a kaleidoscope of colors, scents and sounds last weekend as Gallerie 909 hosted the Black Arts Festival Sat., Feb 27.

The free community event featured local artists who specialized in graphic design, African arts, imports and clothing, indigenous hair care products, natural herbs and spices, healing beads, fabric and furniture. After listening to local drummers and musicians, people had a choice to eat at the festival or next door at Chief’s Creole Café or Deuces BBQ.

At one table, an arts and crafts facilitator was guiding youngsters who were cutting out shapes and putting them together to make a variety of mobiles that can be hung from the ceiling.

Two beautiful young women representing Ntr.Sol Creations talked to prospective customers about the chemical properties of wearing copper jewelry. According to one of the women, when copper jewelry is heated by the sun as you are wearing it, chemicals are released and filtered into the blood stream to reduce free radicals and other harmful chemicals in the bloodstream.

Annie’s Beauty Supply was on hand to talk about hair products and accessories. The business will have a grand opening March 25 to open its new location at 920 22nd St. S.

Other artists at the Festival included ZuluPainter, Sako African Arts and Imports, Steve Ramsey, ZeeZee’s Beads and Things, Morgan Welch and Fanta Celah .

The kids at the festival enjoyed several hands on opportunities to create their own art and special memories.

“I am pleased,” said Carla Bristol, festival organizer and Gallerie 909 owner. She has a knack for bring together and galvanizing the arts community!

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