Celebrating Africa and the African Diaspora

A Gathering Place for People and Events Inspired by Africa,

at the Doorstep of the Virginia University of Lynchburg


After ten years on Garfield Avenue celebrating Africa and the African Diaspora, Africa House transitioned away from that physical location and established a presence at Riverviews aligned with Cynthia Merchant and her company, Pharoah’s Marketplace. That arrangement has now been placed on hold.


Africa House will continue to maintain its presence on the web at www.africahouse.org 


Over the past ten years Africa House has mounted exhibitions of art by noted African American visual artists such as James Phillips, Martha Jackson Jarvis, and Ulysses Marshall while also encouraging local emerging African American artists. Other educational programs for the public in the areas of poetry, music and magic of the African diaspora have also found a place at Africa House.

I would like to thank longtime supporters of Africa House: Hiawatha Johnson, Barry Donald Jones, Violet Mitchell, Carla Heath and Jane Garrett who contributed so much to the success of Africa House. Thanks are also due to dancers, musicians, and spoken word artists: the Randolph College Heritage Ensemble, the Keith Lee dancers, and Sheron White Colson and the Kuumba Dancers among others who provided great entertainment at the opening events. I would also like to thank the community for attending events over the years: their coming together has made it so very worthwhile.

www.newsadvance.com November 30, 2017

Africa House was an art gallery and cultural center that promoted cross-cultural understanding between America and the African Diaspora. This includes exhibiting art work by African and African American artists and craftsmen, exhibiting work with African themes, conducting poetry readings, music sessions, African dance and fashion shows and discussion groups. 

Africa House was owned by artist Ann van de Graaf who maintained an office and studio upstairs. Cynthia Merchant, president of Pharoah’s Marketplace was affiliated withAfrica House. Others associated with Africa House are: Hiawatha Johnson, in charge of special programs, and curators Violet Mitchell and Jane Garrett.


Even though the building on Garfield Avenue is no longer operated as a gallery and studio, Africa House as a concept will continue 


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Africa House staff

Barry Donald Jones, Ann van de Graaf, Hiawatha Johnson, Jr., Violet Mitchell