: Life, Art and A Captured Dream
With a gaze of uncertainty about the next half hour of his
life, Ron Hicks
allowed the seat at Corrider 44 to gradually mold around his
body in an effort to settle into a comfortable position.
Like a film director trying to fit his
surroundings artistically into the "L" and the "7 of his
prepares for what would be a brief reflection of his
life and his
true passion, painting.
Just a few moments into our conversation I was reminded why I asked for the interview.
As a young boy growing up in Columbus, Ohio and later Denver, Colorado, Ron
was influenced by his
mother's passion for art.
Whether it was the books and magazines lying around the house or the occasional art contest entry his
mother would prepare, Hicks
quickly fell in love with creative expression.
talent didn't go unnoticed by bullies in high school either as he
recalls, with a mocking gesture, a particular Dumbo like caricature of a well deserving classmate.
interest grew stronger as he
matured and continued to shine bright through one of the darker times in his
At the age of 16 Ron
, then living in Denver, moved back to Ohio after a traumatic split between his
mother and father.
Strapped financially, Ron and his mother had to rely on the support system of their family, namely an uncle who was the pastor at a local church.
Ron recalls living in the attic of the church for a year while the family struggled to survive.
Once supplementing his
mother's income with his
wages as a Manager at McDonald's
reflects, "I have an appreciation for my experiences.
I'm thankful for where I'm at", he
continue by saying, "I believe in God, he
has blessed my path."
Giving up the school basketball team and focusing on supporting his family and bettering himself, Ron won a scholarship to attend Columbus College of Art and Design… Now the story could continue in this traditional fashion followed by Hicks' accomplishments and life's works but that would take away from his true accomplishments.
Years after leaving Ohio and returning to Denver, a place that he
personally preferred to live, Ron
attended the Colorado Institute of Art
After graduating he
took a job as a freelance illustrator and found himself in a universally familiar rut called practicality.
Each profession has its unique challenges, but in the end, Ron
says, "I came to the realization that I could work for 30yrs, have a 401(k) but would I be fulfilled?"
While many have the inclination to follow their passion, those that actually succumb to their own will are far and few in between.
Unlike most people in his
said, "I had to follow my passion regardless of whether I made money or not.
has become one of America's top emerging artists by finding strength in traditional values even in the face of adversity.
As an African American man, Hicks
has refused to be categorized and unlike many, he
gladly shares his
sensitivity for the experiences life has to offer.
works with three main galleries:
51 Greene Street (Between Broone & Grand Streets)
New York, New York 10013