"What you start out as isn't always what you become." The lesson taught in "Colin in Black & White" the Colin Kaepernick movie which debuted on Netflix. The story Kaepernick would tell would be of Romare Bearden, one of the 20th century's more influential Black artists.
While attending Boston University Bearden played for the Boston Tigers, a semi-pro, all Black team. He had opportunities to play for the Negro League as well as white baseball teams. Bearden pitched against Satchel Paige while playing for the Pittsburgh Crawfords, and played exhibition games against the House of David and the Kansas City Monarchs.
When Philadelphia Athletics owner Connie Mack saw him play, he offered Bearden a place on the Athletics fifteen years before Jackie Robinson.
Bearden would have been the first Black baseball player in the major leagues with the Philadelphia Athletics, but was told he had to pass as white. Bearden would decline, thus abandoning his baseball dream and would focus on his other passion - art.
Bearden's early paintings were of the American South, and his style was strongly influenced by the Mexican muralists. Later he would become an expressionistic, linear, semi-abstract style artist.
Bearden would also write music like the hit song "Sea Breeze", which was recorded by Billy Eckstine and Dizzy Gillespie. It is still considered a jazz classic.
Romare Bearden would become one of America's pre-eminent artists" and "the nation's foremost collagist."