The Ties that Bind: The church, identity, activism,





Please join the Office of the Dean, the Diversity Committee, and Gallery O on H for an exhibit of art and photography in honor of Black History Month. The exhibit explores the African American experience in the United States through a collection of documentary photography, oil paintings, and artwork that incorporates weaving and textiles to address issues of identity and belonging.

For over seven generations, Johns Hopkins SAIS has produced graduates who have gone on to tackle some of the most pressing policy challenges in the world. As an internationally-focused school, we push our students to find constructive, collaborative, and thoughtful approaches to solving any problem anywhere. And while the study of race in the United States is not a traditional component of the international affairs curriculum, we continue to incorporate it into our programming as the national dialogue on race in the country has intensified and evolved in recent years. It is in this spirit of seeking greater education and social change that we host this exhibit.

The works in this exhibit have been curated by Shamila N. Chaudhary, Senior Advisor to the Dean and Fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute, who has started an initiative on visual arts with policy impact in mind. For more information, contact

We are proud to host the following artists:

Sheila Crider
Steven Cummings
Katie Dance
Jay Durrah
Amber Robles-Gordon
Nana Gyesie
Miki Jourdan
Chinedu Osuchukwu

Stacey Lewis
Chris Suspect
Lloyd Wolf
Joy Sharon Yi 

About the Artists

Sheila Crider is an independent mid-career artist based in Washington, DC. She is an active member of Washington Project for the Arts and panelist for the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.

Steven Cummings is a photographer based in the Bloomingdale neighborhood of Washington, DC who documents the changes and growing development in the city. He received his MFA at Maryland College Institute of Art.

Katie Dance is a documentary photographer and videographer with a passion for visual storytelling from the Washington, D.C. area. She received her Master's Degree in New Media Photojournalism from George Washington University.

Jay Durrah is a self-taught artist from Western PA who has been sketching since the age of nine. He received a B.A. in Political Science from Howard University.

Amber Robles Gordon is a mixed media visual artist who works with found objects and textile to create assemblages, large-scale sculptures and installations. She completed her Masters of Fine Arts from Howard University.

Nana Gyesie specializes in street, documentary, and portrait photography. His work is shaped by inspiration he draws from lived lives, the public space, and The City, in any country.

Miki Jourdan concentrates on street and environmental portraits, working to take candid photos that bring out people’s inner humanity and the joys and obstacles they face. A non-profit librarian, Miki has lived in Washington's Capitol Hill neighborhood since 2001.

Stacey Lewis is a metro D.C. based street photographer who loves the challenge of connecting the viewer to an ordinary, familiar scene with everyday people and helping them see her subject in a different light.

Chinedu Osuchukwu is a Nigerian-American artist who graduated from The Corcoran College of Art. His work has been featured by Oprah Winfrey’s O Magazine, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Watergate Gallery. Osuchkuwu has also been an art teacher in Washington DC area schools for the past 15 years.”

Chris Suspect is a street and documentary photographer hailing from the Washington, D.C. area. He specializes in capturing absurd and profound moments in the quotidian.

Lloyd Wolf is an award-winning photographer and educator whose work has been in over 100 exhibitions and is collected in numerous museums and private collections. He has taught at Shepherd College, George Mason University, and to homeless and immigrant youth.

Joy Sharon Yi is an independent photographer and filmmaker based in Northern Virginia who uses media as a means for examining important social and historic issues. She received her Master’s degree in New Media Photojournalism at GW's Corcoran School of the Arts and Design. 

About Gallery O on H: Collecting art for 35 years led the Gallery owners, Steve and Dolly, to eventually bring their dream and passion for art to life on H St NE. What started as free shows, curated by Dolly and with not a price tag in site, has grown into a practiced philosophy of cultivating local art, artists, and events open to everyone with a passion for art. 

Kenney Auditorium, School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Johns Hopkins University

1740 Massachusetts Avenue, NW 

Washington, DC 20036

Photo credit: Chris Suspect