Join us for a double event featuring two essential new books by Baltimore artists: Aaron Maybin's Art-Activism: The Revolutionary Art, Poetry, & Reflections of Aaron Maybin and Kyle "Nice Shot" Pompey's Perspective: Baltimore.
Aaron Maybin is an Art-Activist and former professional football player from Baltimore City, Maryland. Maybin was selected as the 11th overall pick in the 2009 NFL draft by the Buffalo Bills as a former All-American defensive end at Penn State University. Aaron went on to play in the NFL for the New York Jets and the Cincinnati Bengals in his 5-year career. Aaron also played professionally for the Toronto Argonauts in the CFL before making the decision to walk away from the game of football to pursue his career as a professional artist, activist, educator and community organizer. His transition from full-time NFL superstar to full-time artist and philanthropist has been extensively covered by ESPN, CBS, Fox 45, and even garnered an HBO documentary warmly received by critics. His art, photography, and writing deal with many socially relevant themes and issues, drawn from his own personal experiences as a former pro athlete and growing up as a young Black man in America. Aaron uses his platform and gifts to advocate for racial and economic equality, arts education, and programing in underprivileged communities across the country. In 2009, Aaron established Project Mayhem to provide aid, both personal and economic, to help underprivileged and at risk youth excel beyond their current conditions. Through his work with Project Mayhem, Aaron has implemented art workshops and curriculums into several Schools in the Baltimore City area that have had budget cuts due to a lack of State Funding. Aaron is a proud member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity incorporated, The Mayors “One Baltimore” initiative, and a Fox 45 Champion of Courage Award recipient for 2016, He continues to advocate for public policy to see Art programs restored in the schools and more economic opportunities to be provided for the underprivileged people of Baltimore.
Kyle Pompey, owner of Nice Shot Media, LLC. considers himself an "organic photojournalist." Whether photographing in his studio, for a shoot, or in the street, Kyle avoids posed or planned pictures. Instead, he perceives the energy of his subject, which then guides the story Kyle captures in each moment. Baltimore born and raised, Kyle takes pictures of what he knows, and what feels like home to him. He notes that this means he photographs the sides of life, particularly in Baltimore, that people want to overlook. "People don't want to acknowledge it," Kyle says. "So nothing's happening. I use photography to stop time. I want to let people see what's going on through the pictures."