SixTwelve Gallery at Tower Theatre

The Tower Theatre in the Uptown 23rd district of OKC has generously offered us their lobby walls to curate, giving us the opportunity to provide gallery space for local artists and SixTwelve residents from all over the country. With exciting children’s programming taking place during the day at SixTwelve, we are unable to welcome people into our building to view art. Thanks to the generosity of the Tower Theatre, we now have the distinct honor of collaborating with an organization that truly cares about OKC and we are now able to support artists in a brand new way, furthering our vision of supporting the arts in sustainable ways.

currently in the gallerymatt payne

Enkereri's windows: a visit to kenya's enkereri school above the masai mara

ARTIST STATEMENT: In July of 2018, while on Safari in Kenya and Tanzania, I visited the Enkereri School in the mountains above the Masai Mara as part of a cultural enrichment program. What I found at the school moved me beyond any adventure in the savannah below. The school is part of the philanthropic arm of the travel company Abercrombie and Kent. My visit was short and while a joyful one, emotionally conflicting. “Before the school was built, class was held under a tree,” said our guide Fred as he walked us around the various classrooms. Such a thought was remarkably humbling and hard to imagine. “The school’s newly constructed library doesn’t have books yet…” he continued… And I was annoyed my iPhone didn’t work.

TO PURCHASE ANY OF THE WORKS IN THIS GALLERY, CLICK ON THE IMAGES BELOW. IF A WORK IS SOLD, SUBSEQUENT EDITIONS ARE AVAILABLE FOR PRINT. half of sixtwelve's commission (10% of all sales) will be donated to the enkereri school in kenya.

In a small dorm where many students live, some beds had mosquito tents to prevent malaria. Others did not. Their families couldn’t afford them. And while I wrestled with the idea of no books in a library and living with the threat of malaria, I watched the kids playing in the yard. The joy of the their game of volleyball or a game of tag in the schoolyard was the same as anywhere in the world. 

My images are intended to reflect that conflict of emotion, the needs of others, and a reminder that there are vast differences between our culture and others across the world. A world a part and anywhere in the world at once…

ABOUT MATT:

Matt Payne is an Emmy-nominated filmmaker, an award-winning travel photographer and writer, public speaker and adventurer. He is the travel editor for 405 Magazine in Oklahoma City, the producer of the television show Mosaic Oklahoma and is a contributing writer and photographer to Travel Age West, themanual.com, vagabondish.com, Communities Digital News and many other travel publications. Matt is an adjunct professor at Oklahoma City University and travels the Midwest, inspiring audiences with talks covering a range of topics from travel writing and photography to screenwriting. Matt’s wildly popular Instagram account Matt Payne Travel Photography Instagram celebrates 13.5k engaged followers and grows daily. 

In 2015, Matt and his wife moved to Oklahoma after 15 years in Los Angeles where Matt worked in the film and television business episodes of hits shows like Vegas and Defenders for CBS and TNT’s Memphis Beat. He was also part of the staff 24 and Without a Trace.  

Matt’s awards include a 2018 Emmy nomination for the project OETA Foundation project “RARE,” the Society of Professional Journalism’s first and third place awards for Magazine photography and the 2018 PBS Special Achievement Development Award for his television show Mosaic Oklahoma. Matt is a member of The Writer’s Guild of America, Society of American Travel Writers and sits of the board of directors of the Oklahoma City Zoological Society. 

Matt, his wife, his daughter and two dogs live on a farm outside Oklahoma City along with several horses, two donkeys, three chickens and a temperamental rooster named Wayne.

For any further inquiries, please contact us at contact@sixtwelve.org. 

The following images are from Matt Payne’s “Wildlife Series” taken on the same trip as “Enkereri’s windows.” Each image can be purchased as an 8x12 for $50 and an 16x24 for $125. These images are not hanging in the Tower Theatre, but the same percentage of proceeds from sales will go to the Enkereri School and SixTwelve. For more info on purchase, please send us a message at CONTACT@SIXTWELVE.ORG. THANK YOU.