Folk Art in our Community
Storefront Display Honors Recent Immigrants

An empty storefront has been transformed into a cultural commodity. Since January, Meet Erie’s New Americans: A Storefront Exhibition now graces the former American Surplus Store on 416 State Street. The first display features objects from Iraq and Bosnia. Ghadeh Hussein, an Iraqi artist, lent decor, textiles, and housewares. “I am happy to share the beauty of my country,” she declares. Other goods came from the numerous Iraqi-owned markets on Erie’s east side.  Read more.

Ansumana Komba Gbembo, African Clothing Designer
Ansumana Komba Gbembo was recently awarded a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts to pass his traditional art form to an apprentice. There are only a handful of grants like this awarded in the Commonwealth. These grants help communities sustain their folkways by supporting master artists and the perpetuation of their art form.  Read more.
East African Bridal Hair and HennaAn upcoming marriage in East Africa means a night of henna for the bride. Afaf Kormouna, an Erie resident who is a native of South Sudan, is a master artist in traditional hair braiding and henna techniques. She shared what it means to be a bride in her culture. Read More