The mission of Provenance Center is to serve as a public forum in which all dimensions of culture can be examined through the lens of artistic expression. Our vision is that with a clearer understanding of the cultural foundation and origins of the human experience, that which we share will prevail over that which keeps us apart.

Founded in 2009 by Nadesha Mijoba as a project of Mijoba Communications, LLC, a cultural competence consulting group, Provenance Center is an urban gallery space devoted to exploring the origins, roles and meaning of art and culture in the human experience. Provenance Center has hosted a wide range of exhibits, events and activities highlighting many facets of culture as represented by a variety of artistic media.
In selecting subject material for our gallery shows, we seek to bring our audience to a clearer understanding of the cultural foundations of human society, as well as an enhanced appreciation for mankind's diverse social and spiritual life.

  Provenance Center believes strongly in the power of art to positively communicate ideas, expressions and emotions in addition to serving as a voice for those who may otherwise not be seen or heard. Especially for those individuals disconnected from equitable treatment and opportunity due to social disenfranchisement, Provenance Center has, from it's beginning, sought to address such unacceptable societal conditions. For those of all ages, gender and ethnicity, Provenance Center exists as a haven for cultural information, education and enjoyment that we believe every community should offer its citizens. Furthermore, expressed through the language of art, such messages are available to all regardless of education, language or past experience. As a means of unification, art has the power to speak with all people and promote collective action necessary for positive social change. It is the hope of Provenance Center that through increased awareness and understanding of our shared cultural origins, along with our potential for creative expression, we may be able to better address current problems as well as future challenges.
     
     
     
PROVENANCE CENTER ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE PERSPECTIVE
 


"Toxic Reef" by RT Spitz, part of the Abstract Recycling Exhibit 2012.

 
"In keeping with its mission, Provenance Center seeks to highlight the growing challenge of environmental justice. What is environmental justice, really? From our perspective, it is strongly connected to the sentiment expressed in Albert Schweitzer's ethical philosophy of 'Reverence for Life.' This position affirms the notion that all life possesses a will and desire to sustain itself, and also that no life form is ultimately of greater value than any other. While all life forms in some way must depend upon others in their environment for survival, we all similarly struggle, live and die. Furthermore, that one form should needlessly exploit or impair the survival ability of another violates the concept of environmental justice. Mankind has unfortunately engaged in such violations, such behavior persisting at an alarming rate at this very minute. Only in a world where environmental justice prevails will humans experience the possibility of a safe and healthy future for generations to come. And, as behavior has brought us to the patterns of pollution, degradation and extinction we are currently witnessing, only behavior can afford a solution. Our destiny is our choice." ~ Nadesha Mijoba
     
     

ART AND SOCIAL CHANGE
     

For thousands of years, art has been used by men and women to communicate ideas with each other. Consider, for example, the early cave drawings from Lascaux in Dordogne, France, believed to have been created approximately 20,000 years ago. While the full meaning of such artworks may never be known,
it seems fairly certain that their purpose was to instruct, educate and inform other humans at the time regarding activities or events affecting their lives. Even where art is intended to portray a symbolic or mythological theme, the images presented are necessarily taken from knowledge and experience personally relevant and shared. Furthermore, whether as instruction or advice concerning hunting practices or locations, or as religious or spiritual guidance reflecting values and belief systems, the artwork in question always serves a social purpose. Herein lies the power of art as a tool for social change.

But, one may ask, is there not also "art for art's sake", the individual pleasure from creative expression or art created without any particular message in mind? While there is no intention to argue against such sentiment, it remains the position here that art is ultimately a social activity. Even if most of our artistic efforts are done in isolation, the images and ideas come from the shared human experience. The fact that art can mean so many different things to so many people attests to it as a universal language for mankind.

 

The power of art lies in its capacity to communicate without prior learning. Although an understanding of art history or techniques may enhance one's visit to a museum or gallery, it is not a requirement for appreciation or understanding of art's message. As a universal form of communication, art has a unique power to influence individual lives, whether this concerns social, political or religious issues. In whatever medium, as painting, sculpture, photography or film, artistic expression is available to all as a means of both understanding our world and speaking with each other.

In our world today we are faced with many serious challenges. On the edge of constant conflict, humans have yet to find a way to live in peaceful co-existence with each other and with all else sharing this planet. Social and environmental crises have unfortunately become normal events while solutions seem no closer despite the continued advancement of science and technology. Art may not provide answers to the problems of mankind, but as a universal language and common voice, art allows us all, regardless of culture, gender, ethnicity or language, to share and question our world and how we would like to change it for the common good.

~ Nadesha Mijoba
     
     

PROV·E·NANCE, derived from the French provenir and the Latin provenire, means the origin or source of something, and is also used to designate the history of an object in terms of ownership. Establishment of provenance is often a crucial factor in the authentication of a work of art, artifact or historical site. In many fields of inquiry, the primary purpose of provenance is to confirm or gather evidence as to the time, place, and even the person responsible for the creation, production or discovery of the object of inquiry. This will typically be accomplished by tracing the whole history of the object up to the present time.

 

 

   
  165 State Street, Suite 102
    New London, CT 06320
    860-405-5887
Provenance  Center is a project of Mijoba Communications, LLC.
 Copyright©Mijoba  Communications, LLC. 2014. All rights reserved
 
   
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