O’Neil Scott, “Grow Through It,” 2023. Oil on Canvas, 60in x 48 in. (Courtesy: Carter Fine Art).

Fortitude, opened in collaboration with Carter Fine Art in Chelsea, features a collection of new works by a diverse group of artists broadly scaled across different media and concepts. The exhibition centers on the idea of fortitude, signifying courage in pain or adversity; the word ‘fortitude’ represents strength and resilience, the concept that is boldly demonstrated in the pieces on display at Detour Gallery.

Co-curators Shayna Schwartz (Detour Gallery) and Heather Carter (Carter Fine Art) are excited to present this group exhibition showcasing the unyielding strength of the human spirit. “Each piece in the show is a unique and beautiful expression of the many examples of fortitude as one navigates through life’s curve balls: inner strength, resilience, persistence, and positivity. Societal challenges and pressures require courage to overcome and conquer, allowing us to rise to new heights.” 

The show features ten well-known artists: Alonzo Adams, James Andrew Brown, Yunierki Felix, Garry Grant, Troy Jones, IBN Kendall, Tommy Mitchell, O’Neil Scott, Floyd Strickland, and Willie Torbert. Each of them brings their unique perspective and history to their work to represent an idea of fortitude.

WHAT: “Fortitude,” a summer group show at Detour Gallery

WHEN: Jul 26-Sep 21, 2023

WHERE: Detour Gallery, 545 West 23 street, New York

In Troy Jones’s piece entitled Daniel, the subject’s head is turned towards the sky;  accompanied by a halo, Daniel in the painting showcases the power we humans hold as it relates to our fortitude. Jones says, “We can manifest into existence just about anything we could think of. We must keep our heads high and push beyond the storms.” Jones’s piece Stella represents a woman of great strength. She exudes this strength with every graceful move she makes. “She is what fortitude is all about,” the artist says.

Troy Jones, “Daniel,” 2023. Oil on Canvas, 36in x 48 in. ( Courtesy: Carter Fine Art).

Alonzo Adams recognizes the stories of his ancestors and their legacy of fortitude in his work. “You stand on the shoulders of your ancestors, a proud people. You may bend, but you won’t break,” he proudly states. His two paintings of the same name, Dark Child Don’t You Cry (2020, 2023), depict the struggle and strength of a young boy and a young girl.

Alonzo Adams, “Dark Child Don’t You Cry,” 2020. Oil on paper, 33 1/2in x 41 1/2 in. (Courtesy: Carter Fine Art).

For his piece Grow Through It, O’Neil Scott reflects, “It encapsulates embracing challenges, setbacks, and difficult experiences as opportunities for personal growth and development. It emphasizes the importance of resilience, adaptability, and a positive mindset in navigating life’s obstacles. Choosing to learn from adversity and emerge stronger on the other side, “grow through it,” encourages individuals to embrace change, foster self-improvement, and cultivate their inner strength.” ForInner Growth, Scott says, “With fortitude as the guiding force, the inner growth journey becomes a testament to the power of perseverance and the transformative nature of self-discovery. It is through embracing hardships with courage and determination that one can uncover hidden strengths, overcome limitations, and embark on a path of profound personal evolution.”

For artist Tommy Mitchell, he depicts a strong, black woman inClothed in a Cloud. He notes, “The series The Time Spent… Regal, opulent, iconic. The prestige of a woman seeking growth through experience.” Heaven Here With You is a painting of a woman searching for identity and comfort through the loss of love. The artist’s depiction of strong women of color is prevalent throughout his pieces on view for this exhibition.

Tommy Mitchell, “Heaven Here With You,” 2022. Ballpoint pen, acrylic, watercolor paper mounted on wood panel. 42in x 0 in. (Courtesy: Carter Fine Art).

Floyd Strickland’s Bunny Reignportrays a young girl displaying remarkable fortitude as she fearlessly makes her way forward with her imagination as her guide. In Wonderland, Strickland, again, at the center is a young girl portraying strength and fortitude, sitting defiantly with stubborn determination, undeterred by the hate and foolishness surrounding her. She boldly remains resolute and focused on her purpose ahead.

Garry Grant presents his series of works, titled, Monolithic Series. The artist says, “The Monolithic Series is a testament to the resilience and ingenuity of civilizations that thrived during the medieval dynasties. Through my art, I aim to honor and recognize the often marginalized or silenced histories that have shaped our world. Each piece in this series celebrates these civilizations’ remarkable accomplishments and contributions, which have left an indelible mark on human history.”

Personal strength and ancestral resilience shine through the exhibition in a masterful display of artistry in different mediums, shapes, and studies; all on view at this powerful group show not to be missed.