All Things Art

Wells Fargo Presents: The Kinsey Collection at the AHC

photo 5

How was your weekend, friends? The sis & I had one filled with friends, culture, history, laughs, & much more. On Friday/Saturday afternoon we tip-toed over to our beloved Atlanta History Center (AHC) and met the beautiful Kinsey family who has impacted us more than they’ll ever know. We keep telling y’all that the AHC is a place that you’ll visit over & over again. The movie The Hunger Games: Catching Fire filmed recently at the Swan House which makes them cooler than your average history center! So. Go. SOON!!!

Wells Fargo is presenting a traveling exhibition: The Kinsey Collection: Shared Treasures of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey, Where Art and History Intersect, that should be on your spring travel must-see list. If it isn’t–be sure to pencil it in right now. ‘Kay? ‘Kay!  This is basically a collection of everything you DID NOT learn in high school about some phenomenal African Americans.

“I stand a lil firmer & walk a lil taller because of this collection. I’ve grown & continue to grow… …[African American] history is told as if it’s separate, but it IS American history.”— Khalil Kinsey

photo 2 (5)

The sis & I taking a selfie with Mrs. Kinsey!

Who are the Kinsey’s you might be pondering? A belle did too to be quite honest. I remember Shermika vaguely telling me about them after reading an article about the Kinsey’s in a mag a few months back. Those friends who know us personally know that when Shermika is passionate about something she doesn’t stop talking about it. My ears could tell you some stories, honey. LOL!

“Everywhere you go, you make change. Make change for positive.”–Bernard W. Kinsey

To see how their journey of discovery started which ultimately led to this exhibit, have a quick gander at the Kinsey family (husband/wife Bernard & Shirley along with their son, Khalil) in this short video before you continue reading. What are you waiting on? It’s waiting for you!

We were elated to preview the Kinsey Collection before it opened to the public.

In short, the Kinsey Collection is the personal art collection/artifacts of Bernard & Shirley Kinsey, a husband & wife duo of 47 years. This collection has been viewed by almost 4 million peeps from The Smithsonian to now Atlanta. Their son, Khalil, has been an instrumental part in helping with the collection for the last 5 years.

 To describe this family in 3 words: vibrant, selfless, & inspiring

We had a ball conversing with the Kinsey’s. Mrs. Kinsey is such an elegant bright light full of fun & energy. I immensely enjoyed gabbing with her for over 20 minutes about how to start our own family journey of discovery as they did (don’t worry I’ll let you know what we discover). This is one of the reasons Wells Fargo is presenting this exhibit. Did you know that back in the 1800’s Wells Fargo made it known that they wanted all of their customers treated equally? Yep! And in the words of Bernard Kinsey, this is a bank who’s DNA entails equality for all.

Within the collection there are artifacts that have NEVER been seen before including a first edition of 12 Years a Slave. You will see actual books, letters, art, and more that will blow your mind. Moreover, you will see the accomplishments of African-Americans!


“I collect the living artists & my husband collects the deceased ones!”– Shirley Kinsey



On Friday, we viewed the collection & talked to the family. The next day, we went to their lecture at the AHC where the Kinsey’s shared wisdom & interesting history to everyone in attendance. Mr. Kinsey shared facts about American History, and gave life lessons. One tidbit he shared sticks with me:


The Kinsey’s with Well Fargo’s Lisa Frison as the moderator

3 things for a successful life (a Buddish Monk told the Kinsey’s this while traveling  in ’82)

  1. Something to do
2. Someone to love
3. Something to look foward to

 We really want you to go see this exhibit for yourself, but until then check out a few of our grainy iPhone pics (bless our hearts, honey!!!). I left the DSLR charging :)

photo 2

photo 4

A pic of a family taking a pic with the Kinsey’s!

photo 1

Interesting document that shows slave insurance. What caught my eye was the last name on this document. Beyoncé fans wondering what I’m wondering?



Slave shackles for a female



Check out Wells Fargo’s #KinseyUntold playlist featuring Lance Gross (our loyal readers know we adore him!), Jordin Sparks, Talib Kweli, & MORE on YouTube now!!!

Before I forget to tell you–don’t forget to mark your calender & plan a trip to see the Kinsey Collection. Wells Fargo is giving each of you fab peeps a chance to see this magnificent collection for free during these weekends here. What’s more awesome than a free day at the lovely AHC? We can’t think of much either, honey!! Make sure you follow us for more Kinsey/AHC news in the coming weeks! Until next time. xoxo

♥♥Love us? Like us? Then follow a belle why don’t cha!!!♥♥





***We would like to extend a H-U-G-E thank you to our always friendly/sweet friends at the AHC  for gifting us a Kinsey Collection book.  Also, we would like to thank Wells Fargo {Lisa Frison} for gifting us a book as well.

We enjoyed chatting and meeting each & everyone one of you. Everyone from Brandon (The Kinsey fam photographer) to Freddie the social media analyst at Wells Fargo. Best wishes & safe travels to you all. Thank you!!!

Choir Boy


Friends! A belle has had a week of culture. I’ve celebrated my birthday in style (a post to come), and the sis and I have seen some amazing shows. One thing about Atlanta is that there is ALWAYS something to do, and there a plethora of performing arts events going on at any given time. The sis and I were invited to check out Choir Boy, which opened at the Hertz Stage on September 2oth. Being the southern belles we are, we had a shonuff good time listening to the downhome hymnalds that were sung in this play.

Choir Boy is written by Tarell Alvin McCraney, one of America’s more celebrated young playwrights. The play is a coming-of-age story about young black men, and the trials they go through. Expect to see themes of sexuality, bullying, family issues, identity issues, and religious themes throughout.

Choir Boy is set at Charles R. Drew Prep School for Boys, which is a school dedicated to the creation of strong black men. Pharus is its main character. Pharus is an effeminate male who must navigate through the school, as well as uncover his true identity.

If you’re easily offended, I must warn you that the ‘n’ word is used and there is slight nudity. However, going to see Choir Boy made my weekend. This is a really heavy play that  brings to light serious issues–such as discrimination and homophobia. I urge you to check out Choir Boy. The music alone is worth the admission price, but the play is icing on the cake!

Choir Boy ends on October 13th so go NOW! You may purchase tickets here.

Disclosure: We received tickets to this event. As always, a belle’s opinions are her own! 

A Little Bit of Spunk on Stage


 “I git to the git with some pain n’ some spit n’ some spunk.” ~ Zora Neale Hurston 

Hi friends! I hope y’all are doing well. We’ve been on a hiatus, but even a darling belle needs some r&r right? Since we’re relaxed, the sis and I decided to take in a couple plays this weekend. I’ve always been a fan of Zora Neale Hurston’s work, so when a belle found out some of her short stories would be performed on stage, I was giddy with excitement.

The show, Spunk, was put on by none other than Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company, who always deliver quality theatre to audiences in Atlanta. The play was written by noted playwright George C. Wolfe.

Spunk covered three of Zora Neale Hurston’s works: Sweat, A Story in Harlem Slang and The Gilded Six Bits. 

Sweat was about a woman’s triumph over an abusive husband. You will love the soulful down home blues singing that occurs in this story. Imagine yourself transported to the Delta where you get a peek inside the lives of complex characters.

A Story in Harlem Slang was perhaps one of the funniest! The actors were so lively as they told the story of street hustlers trying to out-hustle each other, and  a beautiful woman in the process. You’ll need to glance at your program during this performance, so you can understand what the slang means.

The Gilded Six Bits is about a doting husband who experiences an impasse in his relationship with his wife. The story entails triumph and betrayal.

Throughout each short story, you will continue to hear bluesy music that will make your soul smile. Along with the excellent acting, the music will draw you in. It is truly an experience.

Spunk was an absolutely superb performance!!! Go because you want to see something different. Go because you want to take in AND support the arts. I promise you won’t be disappointed. If you’re a fan of excellent American literature that allows you to peek into the lives of blacks during the Harlem Renaissance and Great Migration, you’re in for a treat. Zora Neale Hurston is one of the foremost writers (and not just African-American) of the 20th century.

Spunk  is playing in Midtown Atlanta at the 14th Street Playhouse, which is convenient to many of Atlanta’s finest dining and shopping establishments. It’s also a perfect place to people watch. The run ends on October 13th and tickets start at $35, which is an AWESOME PRICE for what you will experience. You can purchase your tickets here.

Disclosure: We received tickets to this event. As always, a belle’s opinions are her own! 

Who Murdered the Good Doctor?

Who Murdered the Good Doctor?


Friends, I think you know by now that Houston has a superb art scene and a belle couldn’t be happier in my new hometown! Last week, I indulged in a little mystery; I saw Agatha Christie’s The Hollow at the Alley Theatre in Houston’s famed theatre district. If you are visiting Houston or looking for Houston tourism attractions, you should definitely make like a local and visit Houston’s theatre district!

The Alley Theatre is a beautiful facility and there isn’t a bad seat in the house. The set was stunning!

photo (8)

The Hollow follows the story of a group of cousins and a doctor and his wife who meet at the Hollow family estate for a weekend getaway. During the play we find out about scandal, obsession and ultimately murder. Seems like we watch this on tv on the regular right? As the title implies, the good doctor is murdered and it’s up to the detectives (and you dear friend) to figure out whodunit. I have to proudly boast that I figured out who the murderer was!


Christie’s play has lots of comedic relief, along with tense moments in the play that are sure to make you say hmm. Go see it to beat the Houston heat. Go see it to support the arts. And, go see it to solve a nice little mystery. I promise you’ll enjoy yourself.

The Hollow runs until August 4th on the Hubbard Stage. Tickets start at $26 and you may buy tickets here.

Images taken by Jann Whaley and courtesy of Alley Theatre

Disclosure: We received tickets to this event. As always, a belle’s opinions are her own! 

From My Hometown to Yours Review

from my hometown

One of the things a belle loves most about Houston is the arts scene! Y’all had to have known that was coming. The city has a museum district and a theatre district that is happening! Last week, I saw a PHENOMENAL musical, From My Hometown, at the Ensemble Theatre in downtown Houston. The musical follows three men from Detroit, Memphis and Philadelphia who have dreams of performing at the Apollo and making it big. The Ensemble Theatre dedicates itself to shows that illustrate the African-American experience, and this one did not disappoint.

From My Hometown is the season closer for the Ensemble Theatre, and lemme tell you, you HAVE to go see it. It really ends the season on a feel good note!

If you grew up on real music, and not this cookie cutter stuff they play on the radio nowadays, you will enjoy this musical! Expect to hear a little Otis Redding, Donny Hathaway, and other artists whose names I don’t know but songs I can sing .

The three performers (Jobari Parker-Namdar, Ron Johnson, Anthony BogessGlover) were absolutely talented. All of their voices harmonized well and the men had that soul that makes you bop your head and tap your feet. The musical incorporates classic songs from the Motown era. Trust me, you will be happy you attended this show!

The show ends on July 28th and you can get your tickets here. Tickets range from $20-$45.

Disclosure: We received tickets to this event. As always, a belle’s opinions are her own!