Saarsâ?? art makes deep marks

Alison and Betye Saar have each enjoyed attention from Central Florida's art community as of late. Both have garnered national acclaim for their contributions to African-American art, and they were featured in the Cornell Fine Arts Museum's exhibition "Beyond the Veil: Art of African-American Artists at Century's End," which coincided with this year's Black History Month.

But Alison, a current artist-in-residence at New Smyrna Beach's Atlantic Center for the Arts, has carved out her own identity with feminist-, historical- and folklore-flavored wood sculptures and found-object creations. A collaboration with UCF art instructor Ke Francis is in the works, and she is creating a series of prints that trace the legacy of the tobacco industry. "It's the power of that product and how it affects people that interests me," says Saar, "from slavery times to our cancerous present."

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