Check out + Follow these Boston-based Black women artists

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Boston is a vibrant, diverse city with an active art scene. In particular, there are many Black women artists who are producing meaningful works that explore what it means to be Black and a woman in Boston.

This Black History Month, we asked our supporters and staff about some of their favorite local artists, including visual artists, poets, dancers, and more. The artists listed below are engaging in their communities in many different ways, through shows and installations and online via Instagram and Twitter. Follow these local Black women artists to support their work and engage with the Boston art community.


Melissa Alexis

Image credit: Melissa Alexis

Melissa Alexis is a dance artist in addition to being a yoga instructor, teacher, writer, consultant, and more. As stated on her website, “A first generation Trinidadian-American, her movement research is rooted in exploring the intersection between African and Western perspectives, as well as psychology, social justice, sustainability, and mindfulness studies.” She is also a co-founder of Cultural Fabric, which provides “mindfulness-based consulting, programs and coaching services with tools and expertise to help your organization/community assess and align to a culture of health.” She recently participated in #hellablack, a Boston Center for the Arts event to “to amplify the voices of black artists living and working in, or around, Boston” this Black History Month. Learn more about Melissa and see photos and videos of her work on her website. Follow Cultural Fabric on Instagram @culturalfab.


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Ambrojah’s Instagram bio reads: “Ambs. Mom. Artist. Creative genius. Super feminist. Boston.” She posts new art regularly, typically sketch and painted works, however she works with graphic design, clothing, and accessories. Much of her art portrays black women, celebrating the human form and the life around these women. One portrays a woman with a graduation cap sitting confidently on the Earth while another shows a mom and daughter holding hands with the caption “I voted for you, baby.” Her work is intimate and full of life. Follow her on Instagram @ambrojah.


Justice Ameer

Justice Ameer Boston Poet

Image credit: The Poetry Foundation

Justice Ameer is a Black trans poet whose work has been featured by Glass Poetry Press, POETRY magazine, and The BreakBeat Poets Vol. 2: Black Girl Magic anthology. While technically based in Providence, xe often presents in Boston. As Boston Poetry Slam describes, xyr work “explores the experience of being a Black trans woman in a post-racial and potentially post-apocalyptic America.” Find Justice’s work on the Poetry Foundation website here and follow xem on Twitter @thejusticeameer and on Instagram .@purpleistheoldblack. Xe is performing at the Boston Poetry Slam on March 27, 2019; learn more here.


Kendra Hicks

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Kendra Hicks is a Boston-based artist and community organizer. recently wrote about Kendra’s current work, The Estuary Projects, which memorializes eleven black women and teenage girls who were murdered in Boston in 1979. As she spoke of in the article, “One of the things I wanted to pose really was, ‘Who gets memorialized in the city and who’s allowed to be memorialized? Who has monuments erected in their name?” She honors each woman with a 24-hour pop-up art installation at the place where her body was found on the anniversary of her death. The installations began in January and will continue through May. Afterward, she will be hostings groups of people affected by her art to “work together to develop ‘alternative systems’ for the neighborhoods.” The next installation will be March 14th in Roxbury to remember Desiree Denise Etheridge. Learn more about the project and upcoming installations. Follow The Estuary Projects on Instagram @theestuaryprojects.


Joelle Wendy Jean-Fontaine

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Joelle Wendy Jean-Fontaine is a high fashion designer and creator of I Am Kréyol, a brand “for every woman with a story of overcoming- a story of resilience.” With her mother as her partner and seamstress, Joelle and I Am Kréyol’s “goal is to utilize fashion as a catalyst for change and empowerment, working with skilled Haitian artisans on training for production, thus contributing to their overall success and sustainability.” Joelle’s fashion is vibrant and joyful. She has been named “Best of Boston” by both Boston Magazine and Improper Bostonian. Learn more on the I Am Kréyol website and Instagram @iamkreyol.


Ayana Mack

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Ayana is a visual artist and graphic designer, both in her day job and as a freelancer, “creating logos, helping to build a brand, illustrating or painting.” Most recently she worked on Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley’s campaign, creating stickers, t-shirts, and more, including those with the iconic slogan: “My congresswoman wears braids, rocks a black leather jacket, and a bold red lip.” As YW Boston Advocacy Committee member Beyazmin Jimenez stated, Ayana is “deep in her love for her community and uses her art to extend a platform for women of color everywhere.” Find more on Ayana’s website and follow her on Instagram



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Oompa is a poet, rapper, educator, mentor, and coach who, as stated on her website, is “forever representing the queer, black, orphaned, hood kids and them.” Her jazz-filled musical style pulls you into her confessional songs, rapping about themes of family, love, and racial justice. She is the winner of the 2017 Women of the World Poetry Slam and a finalist at the 2017 National Poetry Slam. Oompa’s musical work has also received great acclaim, with her debut album Nov. 3 named one of Dig Boston’s Top 30 Local Albums of 2016 and named 2018 Boston Music Awards Unsigned Artist of the Year. She will be performing at Salem State University on February 28th and in Lawrence, MA on March 30th. Listen and learn more on Oompa’s website and follow her on Instagram at @oompaoutloud.


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