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Lonnie Smith knew his son was talented at a very young age. His son Kambel Smith has autism and for a long time struggled with understanding his son.
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According to MSN, Kambel as a young kid would draw pictures and hide them inside a vent. The sketches were of a superhero named “Survivor” that he created. When his dad saw them he knew he wanted to get more exposure for his son.
At the age of 15, Kambel began taking art classes and did oil painting landscapes. As the paints and canvases ran out, Kambel decided to do more. He made large sculptures of buildings in Philadelphia from cardboard and foam he found in the trash.
Kambel, who is now 32, said, “I just show who I am.”
For years Lonnie tried to get his son noticed for his talent, but it wasn’t until last September when Kambel was outside his home spray-painting a massive piece of art. His neighbor, Barbara Gettes walked by and Lonnie spoke to her about his art work and background story.
After hearing the story and looking at all the artwork, Gettes said, “I had a great network of creative people, maybe somebody will know something.”
Through social media, Kambel was able to connect with a curator and months later his work was on display at the Elaine de Kooning House.
Kambel, who doesn’t speak out at much mentioned that he loved seeing his artwork on display. Lonnie hopes that his son can inspire other children living with autism and help people understand not to have judgement on those that are autistic.
Check out vintage photos of Black history being made in America below.
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Vintage Photos Of Black History Being Made In America
1. Harriet TubmanSource:Getty 1 of 40
2. Martin Luther King and civil rights leadersSource:Getty 2 of 40
3. Black PanthersSource:Getty 3 of 40
4. Tuskeegee AirmenSource:Getty 4 of 40
5. Books Are Weapons PosterSource:Getty 5 of 40
6. World War II 93rd InfantrySource:Getty 6 of 40
7. Rosa ParksSource:Getty 7 of 40
8. Integrated Classroom in North CarolinaSource:Getty 8 of 40
9. African American Students Enter High School with Military EscortSource:Getty 9 of 40
10. Lunchcounter Protest in VirginiaSource:Getty 10 of 40
11. Harry Belafonte Leads Civil Rights RallySource:Getty 11 of 40
12. Malcolm X's FuneralSource:Getty 12 of 40
13. Martin Luther King's FuneralSource:Getty 13 of 40
14. Lynching Victim Hanging Above CrowdSource:Getty 14 of 40
15. W.E.B. DuBoisSource:Getty 15 of 40
16. Booker T. WashingtonSource:Getty 16 of 40
17. The 369th, 15th New York who won the Croix de Guerre for GallantrySource:Getty 17 of 40
18. Mutilated Corpse of Claude NealSource:Getty 18 of 40
19. Segregated FountainSource:Getty 19 of 40
20. Womens Defense Corp of AmericaSource:Getty 20 of 40
21. Crowd Waiting to Enter Supreme CourtSource:Getty 21 of 40
22. Black Students Integrate Little Rock's Central High SchoolSource:Getty 22 of 40
23. Troops Watch as Black Students Go to SchoolSource:Getty 23 of 40
24. Segregated RestroomsSource:Getty 24 of 40
25. Portrait Of Medgar EversSource:Getty 25 of 40
26. Separate Waiting RoomSource:Getty 26 of 40
27. Race riots in Birmingham, Alabama.Source:Getty 27 of 40
28. A White Man Bars African-Americans From RestaurantSource:Getty 28 of 40
29. Myrlie Evers Speaking at MicrophoneSource:Getty 29 of 40
30. A Young MarcherSource:Getty 30 of 40
31. Civil Rights FightersSource:Getty 31 of 40
32. Elijah MuhammadSource:Getty 32 of 40
33. Anti Segregation In The Southern Stores March At Broadway In New YorkSource:Getty 33 of 40
34. Selma to Montgomery MarchSource:Getty 34 of 40
35. Selma to Montgomery MarchSource:Getty 35 of 40
36. Soldiers at Civil Rights ProtestSource:Getty 36 of 40
37. Luther King's FuneralSource:Getty 37 of 40
38. Coretta Scott KingSource:Getty 38 of 40
39. 'Kidnapped' Poster At Black Panther RallySource:Getty 39 of 40
40. 'Right On!' Black Power ButtonSource:Getty 40 of 40
Black Autistic Artist Being Praised For Building Sculptures was originally published on GetUpErica.com