Artwork advocating for diversity, equity and inclusion open for viewing through August 31
St. Louis, MO [August 22, 2018] – This month, Asia Johnson-Brimmage, a six-year participant in Wyman’s academic persistence and teen leadership programs and senior at MICDS, was selected as the winner of the 21st annual Diverse-City Art Competition, hosted by the Diversity Awareness Partnership (DAP). Her work, entitled “Magic,” is on display at the St. Louis Art Museum through August.
Inspired by art at a young age, Johnson-Brimmage won 1st place for the 9th-12th grade category in the competition. Through this competition, DAP gives students the opportunity to express, through art, their awareness and advocacy of diversity and inclusion within their communities and schools. The competition was open to all students in the St. Louis Metropolitan area.
“Something I’ve learned is that ‘art causes controversy,’” said Asia. “When I heard that, I knew I could take my pieces deeper – make them more meaningful and have them say something. My paintings center around my personal identity and beliefs as an African American woman. I aim to share my perspective and inspire others. And, to show that black artists have value and a place in this industry.”
With Wyman, Johnson-Brimmage recognized her potential, found a path to pursue her passion, and now, advocates for her beliefs. It began by connecting Johnson-Brimmage to MICDS, where she honed her artistic skills and comfort working with a variety of mediums. Her talents and voice has been supported throughout her six years in Wyman programs. This summer, Johnson-Brimmage led Wyman’s Prep Academy by helping 60 first and second year teens explore their self-identify and advocacy through art, and her artwork has been commissioned throughout St. Louis. She’s using her skills to empower the region’s young people to realize their potential, so that they can achieve their dreams, just like she’s doing today. As she thinks about her future, Johnson-Brimmage aims to become a professional artist, and work for a teen-centric program like those at Wyman.
Johnson-Brimmage’s artwork will be available to view at the St. Louis Art Museum through the month of August and will be available for purchase at the DAP annual Diversity Dinner.
Submissions in all mediums including, but not limited to, paint, drawing, photography, video, digital, sculpture, charcoal and mixed media, were accepted. The competition was open to students in Kindergarten through 12th grade residing in the St. Louis Metropolitan area. Submissions were broken into the following categories: K-2nd grade, 3rd-5th grade, 6th-8th grade, 9th-12th grade.
About Wyman: has deployed some of the nation’s most successful evidenced-based solutions to help teens transform their destinies and communities. Each year, 1.2 million youth drop out of high school in the U.S. due to a variety of factors, including the stress associated with living in poverty, lack of positive mentors, supportive relationships and other inequitable circumstances such as the need to find a job or care for a family member. But in Wyman’s programs, youth are succeeding at rates far beyond their peers.
Wyman has been dedicated to serving youth from disadvantaged circumstances for more than a century. Wyman empowers teens, equips adults and strengthens systems. Wyman’s engaging, empowering and experiential programs and services help teens build skills, develop a sense of self, and connections to their world. As a result, teens achieve educational success, develop healthy behaviors and relationships, and exhibit life and leadership skills. From thousands of teens in St. Louis – to tens of thousands nationally – Wyman programs and services make a difference in the lives of today’s teens and tomorrow’s leaders. To learn more and get involved, visit WymanCenter.org.
Associate Director, Strategic Communication and Stakeholder Engagement