Professor Bryan Massey Selected for Monument

UCA Professor Bryan Massey Sr. has been commissioned by the University of Arkansas Public Art Oversight Committee to create a monument to honor Silas Hunt, the first black student to attend a major Southern public university when he was admitted to the University Of Arkansas School Of Law in 1948.

The Public Art Oversight Committee began seeking established professional artists to send qualifications and proposals for an outdoor monument this past fall, according to a press release. This is the first work of art commissioned by the committee.

Visit UCA’s YouTube page to learn more about Massey and his artwork.

Massey was recently selected as one of 84 African American artists nationally for inclusion in a new book called Studios and Work Spaces of Black American Artists. His most recent work, The Jazz Player, was selected and presented to former President Bill Clinton for the celebration and commemoration of the fifth-year anniversary of the Clinton Library in Little Rock in November 2009.  It is now located in the Little Rock Sculpture Garden.

Massey gave two reasons why being selected as the sculptor for the memorial was such a great honor.

“The first one is that to honor such a brave and courageous man such as Silas Hunt to fight the ‘Jim Crow’ system of his day and to stand up for what was right and what he and others in the state of Arkansas believe was their rights as citizens of this nation,”  Massey stated in the press release. “The second one is to be of African American descent and as a sculptor to be blessed with the talent from Him up above to create such a monument of this courageous man. I was not aware of his story until I was notified about the search. I look forward to putting a positive light on this story because being from North Carolina, all I was aware of about Arkansas was the ‘Little Rock Nine and the Central High Crisis’ from 1957 and Gov. Faubus.”