Visual Art, Music Unite in 'Seeing Jazz'

Article excerpt

Jazz will be the soundtrack for art, literature and Black History Month this evening at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild in the North Side.

Taken together, the music and the images will provide "jazz you can see and art you can hear," says Marty Ashby, program director at the Guild.

The event is a reception for artists of works in the "Seeing Jazz: A Tribute to the Masters" exhibit now on display at the Guild's Connie Kerr Gallery and the North Lobby.

The exhibit features works by famous artists such as Romare Bearden and Faith Ringgold and local creators such as John Ritter and Tina Brewer.

But the reception also will honor nine jazz performers who were selected as Pittsburgh Jazz Legends in November at the Guild's gala Downtown. Not only will the jazz stars be honored this evening, but they also will perform.

The jazz players are Roger Humphries, Harold Betters, Chuck Austin, Joe Negri, Cecil Brooks II, Nelson Harrison, James Johnson Jr., Gene Ludwig and John Wilson.

The evening also will feature Pittsburgh native John Brewer signing his new book, "Pittsburgh Jazz."

The display and this reception are ways of "blending all this place stands for," Ashby says, talking about the Guild's role as a jazz concert presenter and as an art education site.

Ashby says it is only a coincidence it is appearing at the start of Black History Month, but it is a bit of luck he is ready to accept. …