In Quest for freedom, Wayne
Wildcat portrays familiar from the 1960's; the Apollo missions, and the
civil rights struggle in Birmingham.
Through the juxtaposition of the civil
rights struggle with the mission to the moon, the painting poses the
question: How is it possible that in this decade of the 1960's, man could
get to the moon, but not sit down peacefully together, Blacks and Whites
at eh same lunch counter? The sit-ins, the marches, the voter registration
drives were ultimately successful, but at a great cost.
The painting portrays the heroes,
struggles, and the intellectual challenges of the 1960's. It evokes the
awesome power of man's will when it is harnessed to his mission. It asks
us to reflect on those times, and our own, and on our priorities. Surely,
mankind can achieve what he dreams, on Earth as well as in the heavens. If
we can get to the moon, we can do anything.
Much of the civil rights legislation
that we now take for granted was passed during the Johnson administration,
although the quest for man's freedom never ends.
This painting has been seen
by Yolanda King in the Wildcat Studio. It was exhibited at the
national conference, The President's initiative on Race, co-sponsored by
the National Parks Service, and Brown Vs Board of Education; and for the
lecture of Desmond Tutu, at the University of Kansas (1999), and will be
on exhibit at the LBJ Museum and Library in Austin in the fall of 2002, in
conjunction with a traveling exhibit of photos of the civil rights
movement from the Smithsonian.