‘ProBlak’ Gibbs moves on from Artists for Humanity

Rob ‘Problak’ Gibbs will be transitioning from the Artists for Humanity organization he co-founded more than 30 years ago to pursue the next phase of his artistic journey. Photo by Artists For Humanity (NGonzales)

Rob “ProBlak” Gibbs, the muralist and co-founder of Artists For Humanity (AFH), will be transitioning from his role at AFH and setting his artistic sights on other stages.

Gibbs currently is based in Mattapan, where he recently won a city of Boston grant to begin operating a gallery and community art space on Blue Hill Avenue. That venture is separate from AFH.

Gibbs said that “investing time, creativity, and love into building a beautiful community of young people and emerging artists has always driven so much of my work both at AFH and beyond. That commitment remains as I am transitioning to continue my artistic journey and share my practice with a broader local, national, and international audience.”

AFH has been for many years both a base and a springboard for Gibbs to develop his craft, to elevate the brand of AFH, and to build community.  Said his fellow AFH co-founder, Jason Talbot, who also holds the title of managing director of programs, “When we were coming up with this whole AFH thing and we were putting together these plans, he was always there as the voice of the community, speaking for the young people who live here, grow up here, who have this unique Boston experience and with that, provide insight that really made this program of ours incredibly enriching for the young people who came here.” 

Gibbs’s multi-faceted career is the result of years of nurturing his expression in parallel with those he has mentored. In turn, he has grown as an artist while leading countless projects at AFH and mentoring more than three decades worth of teens and emerging artists.

During this past year, Gibbs’launched the AFH Artists Fellowship Program, which has been an opportunity to create a full circle moment to re-engage program alumni. Ayana Mack, a member of the inaugural cohort said that “Rob’s authenticity, work ethic, and guidance throughout the fellowship have pushed me to be more confident in my work, try new things, and continue to lean into the support and love from our community of artists, friends and fellows.”

There will be an enduring connection between Gibbs and AFH, including his serving as a champion and advocate for AFH’s mission and work. In addition to this, he will join AFH’s Board of Advisors, a group of highly influential professionals who volunteer, network, and serve as ambassadors for AFH.

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