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TYRONE GETER STOREFRONT AND GALLERY
VISIONS FROM A DISTANCE TIME FINE ART FOR FINE PEOPLE

Theme Talk

God’s Playground
 
I grew up in Anniston, AL during the infamous reign of Governor George Wallace. My family’s history was and still is based in sharecropping in Georgia. My grandfather and grandmother left Georgia looking for something better and eventually jumped out of the frying pan landing in Anniston.
God’s Playground
 
I grew up in Anniston, AL during the infamous reign of Governor George Wallace. My family’s history was and still is based in sharecropping in Georgia. My grandfather and grandmother left Georgia looking for something better and eventually jumped out of the frying pan landing in Anniston. My mother burden with a third grade education began her career in her preteens as a domestic worker. She moved   my sisters and me from Anniston to Dayton, OH where I started the ninth grade at Roosevelt High School. Art at Roosevelt was a passionate discovery that set me on my present path.
 
Living in Alabama introduced me to the joy and pain of religion and all of its components. I learn the power of the word and the spiritual relief of a good Sunday sermon. I was strongly instructed in the heavenly rewards for the righteous and the deadly destructive heat and suffering of Hell’s fire for those who do not abide by the word of God.
 
A Few years ago, a thought fought its way into my consciousness and refused to leave until we had a discussion. Throughout human history, we have all believed that if we lived right and obeyed His teachings, we were assured a place in Heaven. I asked myself, “If so many people are going to Heaven, would it not be over populated. What would they do all day when everything was provide by the Father?
Anything that they wished to do, I said.” If God is what we all believe him to be, his children would be free to roam the clouds of heaven as they wished without fear or restriction. All of Heaven would be theirs to explore and enjoy. God’s Playground evolved from this concept.
 
Jubilation At The Gate
 
Jubilation is the first painting using this concept. Jubilation depicts three souls that have just been released from Purgatory.  The figure of the African American male stands at the gates of heaven preparing to enter into God’s Kingdom. He is over come with emotions and began to celebrate as he announces his arrival to the occupancies on both sides of the gate. The female figure that stands behind his celebrates his good fortune and echoes his joy. The youth on the left blows the horn of Joshua to officially welcome him and demands that the gates be open to herald the entry of Heaven’s newest angel.
 
Just Cause Life Throwed You A Curve Don’t Mean You Have To Catch It
 
I teach painting and drawing at Benedict College. I was also a tenured faculty member at the University Of Akron. I spent seven years from 1979 to 1987 teaching and creating art at Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria, Nigeria. The seven years I spent abroad left me ill prepared for what confront me when I returned in 1987. My first job back was at the Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School. Working with Nigerian college students and my absences from the United States for long periods of time did not prepare me for the seemingly downward spiral that our children seem to be descending. I interacted with young kids who were daily exposed to some of the most horrendous conditions imaginable. The early exposure to poverty, violence and often broken homes led to a cynicism that was painful to watch and accept. I was there for one year but it left a profound impression on me that I knew when the time was right would manifest itself in my art. “Just Cause Life Throwed You A Curve Don’t Mean You Have To Catch It
is the outcome of my first contact with our youth upon my return to the United States.
 
Many of us are born into poverty, beaten down by discrimination and further handicapped by an inadequate education. Do you just play the hand that life has dealt you, accept your fate or strive to draw to a full house from Mother Nature store.
 
The kid in this painting stands alone. He holds an ill-defined baseball glove that offers one solution if you are uniquely qualified. His expression is defiant and offers the notion that he will fight for what he wants and deserve. No hand is forever. No condition is permanent. Life is full of opportunities for the prepare mind.