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Written by: Julie Thieman, Marketing Intern

Photo by Ingrid Damiani

Ingrid Damiani is a contributing artist for LIFT: Contemporary Expressions of the African American Experience which presents a modern response to Jacksonville’s African American Heritage, while using the lyrics to James Weldon Johnson and John Rosamond Johnson’s Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing as inspiration.

Ingrid Damiani, Mr. Rodney Hurst, author and activist, in the historic Masonic Temple on Broad Street where he and his fellow youth NAACP members met in the 1960’s to plan the sit-ins that integrated the downtown Jacksonville lunch counters, encaustic photography on cradled wood panel, 2016, 24 x 24 in.


Damiani is a local photographer who strives to capture everyday moments that depict the uniqueness and special gifts of life. She began taking pictures at the age of fourteen and has since used her experiences as a wife, mother, daughter, friend, and photographer to help shape and bring a deeper meaning to her work.

Ingrid Damiani, Mr. Mal Jones, Jacksonville hip hop and folk artist with his son in Genovar’s Hall where jazz greats like Billie Holiday, Cab Calloway and Ray Charles entertained the neighborhood, 2016, 24 x 24 in.

Through her research of James Weldon Johnson, Damiani found herself longing for the way he described Jacksonville in his autobiography: “a tolerant, vibrant place where opportunity was abundant and neighbors, black, white, immigrant, and natural born, all lived, worked, and played together.” Her photographs for LIFT depict James Weldon Johnson in his multiple roles – an educator, activist, artist, and diplomat – and connect them with individuals in the community who are linked to the historic LaVilla building, which she chose as her setting. Ingrid Damiani’s photos explore the preservation or destruction of history and how that relates to shaping us as citizens.

To learn more about Ingrid Damiani visit her website.

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