Broken crayons still color

April 6 – 29, 2023

When artist Bonnie Hopper was a little girl one Christmas, she received a box of 100 Crayola color crayons to share among the five youngest children. Bonnie was eight at the time and the oldest of the bunch and therefore the undisputed leader. A born artist, she was incensed as she looked on and watched her two sisters and two brothers wear the tips of the crayons down to nubs or simply break them in half. This careless abuse of what Bonnie considered a precious gift had her running to Mama in tears as she complained that some of the best colors were ruined. To her surprise, Mama just laughed- which made her cry even harder.

After wiping her tears, she bent down and held Bonnie’s face between her palms and said simply: “Don’t you know broken crayons still color?”

At the time she had no answer to the question that did little to ease her frustration. However, much later it occurred to her how significant that question was and how it applies to so many things in life. Broken crayons -like people- are no less useful or colorful than whole crayons. We come in all races, sexes, shapes, and sizes. We continue to enrich each other’s lives by providing glimpses of our culture and lifestyles through art that delight, encourage, and educate.

Broken crayons still color is a series of paintings based on that memory. They remind us that our imagination has no limits and can take us anywhere we choose to go, which lead to other questions such as, what if popular fairytales depicted people of ethnic backgrounds, and what that would look like. Then there is the reality of Black culture, which consists of a large part of the day spent prepping in anticipation of sharing a great time with family and friends or a long Sunday morning worship service with little or no time constraints. These are all part of the Black experience Bonnie seeks to share through artistic expression. In Broken crayons still color, Bonnie Hopper reimagines Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella and other fairytales – then threw in some reality for good measure.

Broken crayons still color will be on display at Gallery 110 from April 6 – 29, 2023. Gallery hours are Thursday – Saturday from 12pm – 5pm and by appointment. Please join us for the First Thursday Art Walk on April 6 from 4-8pm.


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About gallery110

Gallery 110’s mission is to provide dynamic opportunities to established and emerging professional artists in an environment that encourages creative expression, experimentation and collaboration. As a nonprofit organization, the gallery fosters artistic and professional connections between its associated artists and the arts community at large through creative dialogue, the presentation of challenging and enriching curated exhibitions, public opportunities and collaborative projects.