The summer before in 1967 Barbara and I had gone to Europe with MJ for two whole months while Mom Faith concentrated on producing her great murals DIE, THE FLAG IS BLEEDING and THE UNITED STATES POSTAGE STAMP TO COMMEMORATE BLACK POWER. During the day she painted at the Spectrum gallery on 57th Street with her friend Jeannine Petite, and in the evenings she avoided her own apartment where Dad was and went instead to MJ's smaller, less demanding apartment. Dad was effectively abandoned for the summer and eventually wondered away to establish his new apartment in 409. Faith tells me and tells everyone that this was the first time ever in her adult life that she had ever been entirely on her own, entirely alone and free to do whatever she wished without having to consider the wants and needs of her family. She was 37 years old and it had been a very long wait.
So Barbara and I both spent the summer of 1968 in an arts program in Harlem at Music and Art, which was then located on the City College of New York campus. Given my superior training and maturity, I was soon drafted by the teacher as her demonstration assistant. Mom was chasing the Art World after the opening of her first one-woman show at the Spectrum Gallery in the fall of 1967, to which we invited all our friends from New Lincoln. We drank champagne and danced as the adults made a circle around us.