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People We Love :: Carol Bebelle

New Orleans Artists “Come Home!”

New Orleans Artists "Come Home!"

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For more than a decade, Carol Bebelle has worked for the economic, social, and artistic revitalization of Oretha Castle-Haley Boulevard, a historic black neighborhood of New Orleans. Her nonprofit community arts center is called, appropriately, “Ashé,” the Yoruban word for “Amen” or “let it be done.”

After Hurricane Katrina flooded the city, Ashé offered a wide range of services to those who remained, including job training and health counseling. But the center remains primarily a place for artists to collaborate, create, and present their works.

“We’re opening our arms and saying, ‘Artists, come home,’” says Bebelle. “Artists take nothing and make something out of it all the time. Getting them up and doing things is a sign of hope for everybody.”

Interested? Ashé’s cultural arts blog is regularly updated with information about the galleries it hosts, along with announcements of positive activism in the area. www.ashecac.org

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