Ammar Nsoroma shows off his drawing talent with a portrait of Cindy Rose during the 2nd Annual Black Arts Festival on May 18.

Not even the sun could outshine the 2nd Annual Black Arts Festival on Wednesday, May 18, outside of the Center Building. Crowds gathered from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. to enjoy music, dance, crafts, food and art without a cloud in the sky. The festival was directed by the Black Student Union.

There were a variety of scheduled activities, ranging from an open mic with BSU president Giovanni Brown, to a drumming workshop and tumbling performances led by Brown’s father Bue. First year sociology student Sean W. Goddard took the mic and shared some inspirational life stories. Goddard shared how he traveled to Eugene searching for diversity.

“I found myself in a place lacking in diversity, and it was at that point that I could be that which is lacking,” Goddard said.

One of the main attractions of the event was 48-year-old artist Ammar Nsoroma from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Nsoroma, who started painting in high school, has been doing portraits for 32 years. According to the website Milwaukee Mural Map, Nsoroma “has created over 100 murals in Milwaukee, Chicago, Los Angeles, Minneapolis and Washington DC collectively.” His attire, an African raiment from Mali, is a trademark dress he dons while painting.  

The day was capped off with a BBQ chicken dinner and a two-hour musical performance by Alice Domicile, I-Chele Chaya and the Circle of Light in the auditorium.