2019 James Weldon Johnson Fellows in the Arts

 

At Five Acres

“At Five Acres” John E. Nail, Walter White, Grace Nail Johnson, James Weldon Johnson, circa 1926, YALE UNIVERSITY BEINECKE DIGITAL COLLECTIONS; “At Five Acres Fellows Welcome Dinner” 2019 James Weldon Johnson Fellows in the Arts Randy Preston, Laura Migliorino, Russell Harris, Karyn Parson, July 28, 2019, Five Acres, Great Barrington, JAMES WELDON JOHNSON FOUNDATION

“At Five Acres” John E. Nail, Walter White, Grace Nail Johnson, James Weldon Johnson, circa 1926, YALE UNIVERSITY BEINECKE DIGITAL COLLECTIONS; “At Five Acres Fellows Welcome Dinner” 2019 James Weldon Johnson Fellows in the Arts Randy Preston, Laura Migliorino, Russell Harris, Karyn Parson, July 28, 2019, Five Acres, Great Barrington, JAMES WELDON JOHNSON FOUNDATION

“Four Fellows at Five Acres” Karyn Parsons, Randy Preston, Laura Migliorino, Russell Harris, July 28, 2019, Five Acres, Great Barrington, JAMES WELDON JOHNSON FOUNDATION

“Four Fellows at Five Acres” Karyn Parsons, Randy Preston, Laura Migliorino, Russell Harris, July 28, 2019, Five Acres, Great Barrington, JAMES WELDON JOHNSON FOUNDATION

“Selfie with Fellows at Five Acres” 2019 James Weldon Johnson Fellows in the Arts Welcome Dinner, July 28, 2019, Five Acres, Great Barrington, JAMES WELDON JOHNSON FOUNDATION

“Selfie with Fellows at Five Acres” 2019 James Weldon Johnson Fellows in the Arts Welcome Dinner, July 28, 2019, Five Acres, Great Barrington, JAMES WELDON JOHNSON FOUNDATION

 

About the Fellows

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Dr. Allison E. Francis Paynter

Dr. Allison E. Francis Paynter is a Professor of English, and Coordinator of the English Department at Chaminade University of Honolulu in Hawaii. Dr. Francis teaches and publishes academic papers on a range of topics, which include Victorian and Scottish Literature, Theatre and Poetry, Vodou in Haiti, 19th century African American and Caribbean women’s Literature, and Women’s Literature with a focus on science fiction and fantasy. And, she is thrilled to complete a theatrical adaptation of James Weldon Johnson’s novella, The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man.  Dr. Francis expects to stage a production of her play in New York and Hawaii this coming year. READ MORE


Russell Harris

Russell Harris is a versatile artist who paints the figure, still life scenes, and small, complex trompe l'oeils. His brushwork varies between loose and expressive, to highly refined and nearly imperceptible. Each work is carefully composed and restrained, giving each object or figure depicted a quiet power and intensity. Harris has exhibited nationwide at The New England Fire and History Museum in Cape Cod, MA, Gallery 323 in New York, and The Cornell Museum of Art in Delray Beach, FL to name but a few. READ MORE

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Laura Migliorino

Laura Migliorino is a photographer who was born in Cleveland Ohio. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Walker Art Center, Weisman Museum in Minneapolis, The Minnesota Center for Book Arts and The Warehouse in Atlanta. She has exhibited internationally for over 30 years. Laura is a Professor of Art at Anoka-Ramsey Community College near Minneapolis. Migliorino's BFA is from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and her MFA is from the University of Minnesota. READ MORE


Karyn Parsons

Karyn Parsons is best known as the character “Hilary Banks” on the long-running television show, “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.” Karyn created the Sweet Blackberry Foundation after being inspired by the true tale of a determined enslaved man and the remarkable lengths he travelled to find his freedom. A mother and an activist, Karyn believes that stories have the power to inspire youth. Karyn most recently released her debut novel "How High the Moon" published by Penguin Books. READ MORE

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Randy Preston

Randy Preston is a singer-songwriter, educator and storyteller who grew up on 3 continents. Raised in England and Kenya, he gained a deep appreciation for the lore, the myths and the legends of the places he has lived. Most recently, Preston has been fascinated with stories and songs of his grandmother’s tribe, the Piscataway people, a Native American tribe local to Maryland and Northern VA. For the past two years, Preston has been touring with Kwame Alexander visiting schools and special events to entertain and engage people through catchy music and interactive storytelling. He’s written original songs for Kwame’s latest novels in verse REBOUND and SOLO. READ MORE