catherine_lowe_web.jpgLAKE PARK — Artists Showcase of the Palm Beaches and the Friends of the Lake Park Public Library hosted the Annual Collaborative Art Exhibition & Reception, “Contemporary Art Perspective — A Gathering to Explore Color & Images,” Feb. 23 at the library.

Featured artists included Lupe Lawrence, Peter Marshal, Mark Manning, Joseph Pierre and Florida Highwayman Roy McLendon Jr.

McLendon is the son of African-American artist Roy McLendon Sr., one of Florida’s 26 black artists known as “The Highwaymen,” who initiated the Indian River art movement in the 1950’s. Though not considered one of the original 26 Highwaymen, Roy Jr. says he clearly remembers that from the age of 8 years, he was painting alongside his father, with his mother’s encouragement.

Also contributing to the festivity were the Children of St. George’s Center and J.A.Y. Ministry of Riviera Beach. Supporters included the Palm Beach Cultural Council.

Artists Showcase of the Palm Beaches, Inc. was founded by Dr. Catherine Lowe and several board members in 1989 after recognizing a need for venues to educate, promote and showcase ethnic artists.

Artists Showcase was born as a non-profit 501C (3) corporation in 1995, and since then has supported the professional growth of emerging ethnic artists by promoting, displaying and marketing their works.

The nonprofit also provides after-school and summer art programs for at-risk youth. It also needs support to maintain the Historic Jenkins House, 815 Palm Beach Lakes Blvd. in West Palm Beach, as its administrative office and community arts & cultural center.

Dr. Jenkins, one of the first African-American pharmacists in the northwest community, was a well- known community activist and very committed to education, along with his wife Roberta.

Showcase supporters consider keeping the legacy and inspirational dreams of Dr. Joseph Wiley Jenkins and Mrs. Roberta Jenkins to be extremely important for the children and the early history of West Palm Beach.

To help Artists Showcase with a fundraising event, call Project Director Bevins Bennett Jr., 561-832-1323 or email asotpb@bellsouth.net

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Photo: Dr. Catherine Lowe