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Jon Onye Lockard

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Information about Jon Onye Lockard

Profile image of Jon Onye Lockard

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
EducationMakers
Occupation(s):
Muralist
Art Professor
Painter

Favorites

Favorite Color:
None
Favorite Food:
Fried Chicken, Seafood
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall, Spring, Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
1/25/1932
Birth Location:
Detroit, Michigan

Profession

Category:
ArtMakers
EducationMakers
Occupation(s):
Muralist
Art Professor
Painter

Favorites

Favorite Color:
None
Favorite Food:
Fried Chicken, Seafood
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall, Spring, Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
1/25/1932
Birth Location:
Detroit
See how Jon Onye Lockard is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Painter, educator, and historian, Jon Onye Lockard, was born January 25, 1932, on Detroit’s east side; his mother, Lillian Jones, came from Port Arthur, Mississippi, and his father, Cecil E. Lockard, from Marianna, Arkansas. Lockard grew up around Franklin’s Settlement House with Milt Jackson, Kenny Burrell, and Oscar Graves; he attended Norville and Smith Elementary Schools and Barbour Intermediate School. At age twelve, Lockard worked for the Overton Sign Company; he later won a job with Walker and Company, but was later rejected because of his race. Lockard graduated from Eastern High School in 1948; he then took classes at Meinzingers School of Art and worked for the Palmer Paint Company. Lockard graduated from Wayne State University in 1955 and pursued further study at the University of Toronto.

Working as a traveling portraitist in the late 1950s and early 1960s, Lockard painted portraits at the Seattle World’s Fair in 1962. In Houston, Lockard met Texas Southern University’s John Biggers. In 1967, Lockard attended Jeff Donaldson’s CONFABA at Northwestern University and witnessed the founding of the AFRICOBRA group. During this period, Lockard added the name, “Onye” which is from “Onye Eje” or Ibo language for “artistic traveler.” In 1969, Lockard attended the National Conference of Artists (NCA) meeting in Chicago. As an illustrator, Lockard contributed to independent black publishing efforts. Lockard’s drawing of angry youth, entitled What are we going to tell them? (1967) appeared on the cover of I.P.E.’s Black Books Bulletin. Known for his rich use of color and powerful use of form, Lockard’s murals find a natural home on college campuses; his piece, Continuum, spans Wayne State University’s Manoogian Center, and his other murals are located at Central State University, the University of Michigan, and Detroit’s Dr. Charles Wright Museum of African American History. Lockard’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally for several decades. Robin Dunitz featured Lockard’s mural work in Walls of Pride.

Lockard taught life drawing, portrait painting, and the art and culture of African Americans for over forty years, gaining popularity as an instructor at the University of Michigan and at Washtenaw Community College. Lockard also served as president of the NCA, and associate director of The Society for the Study of African Culture and Aesthetics. Lockard co-produced and hosted Barden Cable’s Sankofa television program. Lockard and his wife, Leslie, raised three children.

Lockard passed away on March 25, 2015.

See how Jon Onye Lockard is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Jon Onye Lockard's Interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Jon Onye Lockard lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Jon Onye Lockard describes his maternal family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Jon Onye Lockard describes his mother's siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Jon Onye Lockard describes his maternal family's educational backgrounds and businesses
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his mother's relocation to Detroit, Michigan and her education
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Jon Onye Lockard describes father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Jon Onye Lockard speculates about why his paternal family left Marianna, Arkansas
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Jon Onye Lockard describes his maternal uncle, Robert Jones
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Jon Onye Lockard describes his childhood household in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Jon Onye Lockard describes the neighborhood where he grew up in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Jon Onye Lockard describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood in Detroit, Michigan pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Jon Onye Lockard describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood in Detroit, Michigan pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his childhood friends and interests in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Jon Onye Lockard lists the elementary schools and high schools he attended in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Jon Onye Lockard recalls his first job at Ovelton Sign Company in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Jon Onye Lockard describes African American sign painters' working conditions before the desegregation
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Jon Onye Lockard shares what he learned from his first job at Ovelton Sign Company in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about winning an advertisement contest in high school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Jon Onye Lockard remembers his interview for an internship with Walker & Company in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his involvement in sports and clubs at Eastern High School in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about attending a prom at another high school due to the unofficial segregation at his own
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Jon Onye Lockard recalls his high school guidance counselor discouraging him from applying to college
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about attending Wayne University and Meinzinger Foundation Art School in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about working at Palmer Paint Company in Detroit, Michigan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about travelling at the beginning of his art career
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Jon Onye Lockard remembers muralist John T. Biggers
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Jon Onye Lockard remembers HistoryMaker Bing Davis and the National Conference of Artists
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Jon Onye Lockard recalls joining the National Conference of Artists at its 1969 conference in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about the National Conference of Artists' evolution from a social organization to a more politically-oriented one
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Jon Onye Lockard recalls his trip with HistoryMaker Margaret Burroughs for the National Conference of Artists in Suriname
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about travelling to Suriname with the National Conference of Artists
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his first print artwork, Black Messiah
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about the Detroit, Michigan riots inspiring his creation of 'What are We Going to Tell Them'
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Jon Onye Lockard explains the inspiration behind his painting, 'Ahm Gonna Raise This One Myself'
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his teaching in higher education
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Jon Onye Lockard explains how perceptions of colors vary across cultures and how that impacts an African American aesthetic
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Jon Onye Lockard remembers his experience at FESTAC in Lagos, Nigeria
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his favorite murals that he created
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his famous recreation of Aunt Jemima in 'No More'
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Jon Onye Lockard describes his hopes for the African American community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Jon Onye Lockard reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Jon Onye Lockard reflects upon his life
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Jon Onye Lockard talks about his family
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Jon Onye Lockard describes how he would like to be remembered