Kenneth “FINGERCREATIONS” Hordge is extremely down to earth. He’s a private person and self-proclaimed introvert, more prone to stand back and observe than to strike up a conversation with strangers. But people who know him call him Sunny and as he begins to talk, I see why. He lights up about his art, his ambition, and his family, specifically his kids. Beaming and refracting, not unlike the glass he uses in his art. I sat down with FINGERCREATIONS less than a week before the close in We. The Culture: Works by The Eighteen Art Collective to talk about what it means to him to be an artist and how he juggles working full-time, being an active dad, and chasing his dreams. 

Taylor Hurt (TH): So, let’s start with the obvious. How did you get your name FINGERCREATIONS? 
I paint with my hands. Some artists use brushes, others use pencils and there’s nothing wrong with that, but I just wanted to do something different. It took me a while to get my art where I wanted it to be, but it works for me now.  

TH: Has that always been the case? When did you get your start? 
I started drawing as a kid and back then it was pictures of Garfield. I took a break from art for a while and started again when I was bored at work. Then my coworkers started asking me for commissions a few years ago. That’s when I got serious, but I was on a break again right up until the pandemic. 

TH: Why did you take a break? 
Life! I have three beautiful children and at the time I was more focused on providing and being a good father than being an artist. I didn’t have a lot growing up and I like nice things. When I do go full-time as an artist, I want it to be right and it has to make sense financially and artistically. I want the freedom to create how I want when I want; not because bills are due. 

TH: So, what brought you back? 
The mural. I’ve known Mali [Jeffers, co-founder of GANGANG] for a long time, and I got in touch pretty late in the process. I saw an opportunity to show my appreciation for the Black community, so I reached out. I didn’t think I would make it in, but everything happens for a reason.

TH: From Muhammad Ali to Madame CJ Walker, your piece in the exhibition is pro-Black. What made you decide to go in that direction? 
Yeah, I used the caution tape and stop signs in the background to show that there is no stopping Black excellence. No matter what, we’re always going to overcome. And the glass is like you can’t stop us from shining. Ashley Nora, a co-member of The Eighteen Art Collective, showed me the method and I like that it adds another level of dimension to my work. 

TH: Was this always your dream? Did you always see yourself here? 
I knew there was something about me that was special, for a long time I thought it was basketball. God puts something special in everyone and not everyone finds it but when you do you have to share it with the world. It’s my dream now though. 
TH: How does your family feel about you being an artist? 
My family is everything to me. My mom helped me come up with the concept of working on drywall so the pastels wouldn’t smudge—she’s always been my biggest fan. It’s another blessing to chase my dreams while my kids are watching. They love it and it feels good to be a pillar to them; someone they can look up to. 

TH: So, what was the opening like for you, were your kids there? 
Of course! And my mom was too. I had a “Mama, we made it” moment. Your son is in a national museum. It was surreal and very humbling. I remember coming here with my grandmother as a kid and not seeing myself represented, so to be a part of this was amazing. 

TH: And how do you feel now that it’s closing? 
I know once the show comes down its going to be like Wow! It’s really over! I’m so humbled. I know so many artists go their whole lives without making it into a museum. The ability to create at this level and inspire the next generation of artists is an honor. 

TH: That’s awesome! What’s next? 
I’m definitely going to the closing party. After that I have a show in Ohio at Culture Black Fine Art Expo, maybe working on some stuff for All-Star Weekend, but mostly just continuing to work and build my collection. 

FINGERCREATIONS piece You can’t stop BLACK EXCELLENCE will be on view in We. The Culture: Works by The Eighteen Art Collective in the Indianapolis Museum of Art through this Sunday, September 24, 2023. You can check out FINGERCREATION’s pieces on his Instagram @fingercreations. Or view it at the closing reception Friday, September 22 from 8 to 10 PM. 

Exhibition Credits: 

We. The Culture: Works by The Eighteen Art Collective is presented by Aaron Wealth Advisors, Gary & Hannah Hirschberg. Lead support is provided by Rachel M. Simon & the Herbert Simon Family Foundation and June McCormack. Associate support is provided by IceMiller and its Racial Equity Solutions Team. Additional support is provided by Judy Donner, Nathan & Deborah Oatts, and Emily A. West. 

Image Credits:  

Installation view of We. The Culture: Works by The Eighteen Art Collective in the June M. McCormack Forefront Galleries, September 23, 2022–September 24, 2023. Artworks © their respective creators.