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Trina Slade-Burks

This feature is to focus on South Florida locals who choose to take charge and do themselves, what they’d like to see in the community. Meet Anthony and Trina Burks.

Anthony, a native Floridian born in Lake Worth, is both a fine and commercial artist.  He works numerous forms of media including pen & ink, pastels, watercolor and color pencils.

Born in Harlem USA, New York, raised in Marble Hill Projects in the Bronx, Trina Slade-Burks’  multimedia influences have included creative writing, visual arts, music and theatrical artistic art disciplines.

When did you choose to become active participants in promoting local art and why?

Trina:  I started back in 1992 when Anthony’s art needed to be represented.  In 2004, I became part of the Artists of Palm Beach County, more artists needed exposure and that was when I knew I needed be part of something bigger.
Anthony: Day One, Art is my LIFE!

What projects are you working on? What are your immediate & future goals?

Trina: We have a show we are hosting at the Armory Art Center called Collaboration: African Diaspora Exhibition & The Mighty 9 book.
Anthony: The same and to open my Art Studio & Gallery.

Tell me more about the “Collaboration: African Diaspora” exhibition set to take place at the Armory 9/20—11/9. What prompted this show?
Anthony and Mermaid
Anthony and Mermaid

Trina: Anthony did two art shows (called ArtAfrica) during Art Basel for the last two years in Miami with a group of talented artists. This show initially was a concept that was a kick off to the ArtAfrica show. It just made sense for us to put together something dynamic to show our community the level of talent that will be shared by these artists of African descent in the 21st century. Participating are Addonis Parker, Al Burts, Barbara Cheives, Carl Craig, David German, Donald McKnight, Franklin Sinanan, Herschel Yelder, Howard T. Cash, James Rush, JaFleu, Kianga Jinaki, Lee Glaze, Lupe Lawrence, Michael Hall, Mikhaile Solomon, Nzingah Oniwosan, Robert McKnight, Rodney Jackson, Shawn Henderson, Simone De Bernard, T Elliot Mansa, Tonya Akins, and us.

“The Mighty 9”, how did that come about? Any particular reason?

When we started the layout for the African Diaspora show, we noticed that we had small amount female artists in the show. Then an artist friend of mine, Rolando Chang Barrero, had recommended that we needed to make this concept bigger. He said since I was a writer, we need to look at this like a new Harlem Renaissance. So Anthony suggested that I get a group of female writers & put together something that can accompany the show. There will be book signing during the show’s run.  Participating writers are Angelina Stewart, Ansonia Hixon, Damaa Bell, Jasira Monique, L. Medford, Kimberly Nyesha Smith, Melissa McKnight, Yulette Newman, and myself. We are working for a July publication date.

What are some of the challenges you’ve encountered in pursuing your goals?

Both: Lack of support from our own community, financial challenges & risk of losing our own home which is also where we run our company.

How has the city changed since you moved down?

Trina: Culturally it was lacking, now there is some progress being made.

What changes have you seen, places come and gone, that you wish were still around?

Anthony: The original Palm Beach Mall.  Not the one from the 1990’s when it started to change, but the one I remember going to with my grandmother in the ’70s and ’80s. It used to be a place I enjoyed going to as a kid and HOPS — great, affordable steaks and atmosphere.

What is your favorite restaurant/dish in town?

Trina: Malakor Thai‘s Crying Tiger and City Cellar‘s Certified Angus Hanger Steak.
Anthony: Malakor’s Seafood Salad and their Drunken Noodle.

There is a lot going on in South Florida, what is one event that you try not to miss?

Trina: Honestly, I no longer have one. The community’s priority no longer appears to service my interests.
Anthony: Jazz in the Gardens and all local art shows.