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The AME Church was founded in Philadelphia by Richard Allen and incorporated in 1816. Located at 6th and Lombard streets, Mother Bethel AME Church is the cornerstone of the nation’s oldest African-American denomination.

“We are honored to host the 50th Quadrennial Session of the General Conference in the city that has served as the birthplace of both our nation and our beloved church,” stated Bishop Gregory Ingram, presiding prelate, First Episcopal District, AME Church, in a press release. “As we continue to impact the world through ministry, advocacy, education, activism, public service and outreach, we are especially proud to honor our visionary founder Richard Allen with a mural at our First District Headquarters at 3801 Market Street as well as a statue at the historic Mother Bethel AME Church.”

In honor of the African Methodist Episcopal Church’s bicentennial celebration, running through July 13 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and other locations throughout the city, the AME Church’s General Conference hosted a VIP Red Carpet reception on Tuesday evening at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (PAFA) to preview “The Extraordinary History of the African Methodist Episcopal Church,” which runs in tandem with the conference being held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

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“People should really understand there is lots of power in art and it all goes back to ownership,” said Florcy Morisset, owner and creative director of Vivant Art Collection.

Morisset has been preaching the virtues of art ownership in her downtown Philadelphia gallery, the only one in the city, which specializes in haitians and culturally ethnic world art, for over seven years. In September she will officially be closing the gallery doors and moving her collection online. However she is still particularly keen on inspiring more black patrons of the arts.

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The Philadelphia art scene is taking a loss. After seven years of providing a space of diversity and showcasing underrepresented artwork, founder Florcy Morisset will be closing the Vivant Art Collection this fall. It was the only Black-owned space in Philadelphia’s historic Old City section, where on any given First Friday, you could not only see a flood of diverse faces but also intriguing artwork from Africa, Latin America and throughout the Caribbean.

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The doors of the Vivant Art Collection will close in September after seven years in operation.

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I opened the gallery six years ago. November 17th will be my sixth anniversary. This is an amazing feat in itself given that I opened during what was technically a recession. The idea behind it was to celebrate my Haitian heritage. I quickly realized that there were so many other countries that need to be exposed.

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The (lithography) print by Charly Palmer commemorates the fiftieth anniversary of historic actions taken to offer equal rights to an education for all Americans.

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“Buy the art that speaks to you. It has to speak to you. It has to speak to your spirit,” said Florcy Morisset, owner of the Vivant Art Collection in Old City. Because it’s “not [about] what people tell you to buy.”

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There’s relatively little that’s monumental, but much that’s intriguing, in “Sculpture Now 2013,” a wide-ranging show of work by members of the Washington Sculpture Group. The 27-artist selection at Honfleur Gallery,

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Harnel Paraison from Univision interviews Florcy Morisset, Creative Director of Vivant Art Collection as they celebrate their 5th Anniversary in Philadelphia, PA.


VIVANT ART Gallery in Old City can get to jumpin’. The last time I went to an event there, free wine flowed, local artists performed and the place was packed with hip young professional types…

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