We all enter life as a blank canvas.

 

With love, security, and expression, we can each become a masterpiece.

Our Mission

Life Pieces To Masterpieces uses artistic expression to develop character and leadership, unlock potential, and prepare African American boys and young men to transform their lives and communities.

Our vision is that our boys and young men will become catalysts for positive change in the world.

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“Life Pieces is always a place for hope, in my opinion. No matter what we go through, it's like we're always a family, a brotherhood.”

Cateo HiltonJunior mentor, who began at LPTM at age 4

“LPTM Apprentices are a gift to the communities that they come from. Intelligent, thoughtful, generous and caring, they remind us of why we do what we do.”

Shawn HardnettCEO & Founder, Statesmen College Preparatory Academy For Boys PCS

Life Pieces To Masterpieces
25th anniversary!

Life Pieces To Masterpieces celebrates 25 years of Creating Art…CHANGING Lives. CHANGING how Black boys and young men see themselves. CHANGING how the world sees Black boys and young men. Our Black boys and young men CHANGING how the world understands our shared humanity.

Our Covid-19 Response

Through a challenging, changing landscape, Life Pieces never hesitated to act. Hand in hand with our boys and families each step of the way, discover how we have navigated a year like no other.

After School Program

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Summer Program

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Saturday Academy

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Color Me Community

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What We Do

LPTM helps young people turn life challenges into opportunities for self-reliance, resilience, and success.

Our programs teach integrity, character development, and leadership skills. Join us and help ensure that every child in our community has a strong support system and the prospect of big dreams and a bright future.

Our Theory of Change

At Life Pieces, we are:

  • Changing how Black boys and young men see themselves

  • Changing how the world sees Black boys and young men

  • Our boys and young men are helping the world discover our shared humanity.

         Dear beautiful black boy, dear world…

We see you, and we love you.

Check out courageoncanvas.org in celebration of our boys and young men.

Our Stories

Tyriek Mack

Tyriek is an LPTM Saturday Academy graduate and law student at the University of Virginia Law School, where he is attending on a full academic scholarship.

Tyriek is an LPTM Saturday Academy graduate and law student at the University of Virginia Law School, where he is attending on a full academic scholarship. Tyriek graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison with a B.S. in Economics and a Certificate in Educational Policy. While a high school student at the School Without Walls, Tyriek learned about Saturday Academy from Jahi (left), who was a participant. Tyriek soon enrolled, and when it came time to complete his H.S. senior project, he created one with LPTM’s Legacy Apprentices (ages 10 – 13) focused on altruism and service learning. He had studied LPTM’s Human Development System and decided to create the project around the system’s 4 C’s: Connect – Create – Contribute – Celebrate! “I saw that young people have a lot of self awareness and understanding of issues in the community. They want to help, they want to create a change. Life Pieces helps them use their creativity to have a positive influence on life in their school and community.”

Tyriek entered the University of Wisconsin on a Posse Foundation Full-Tuition Leadership Scholarship. He spent a summer studying at Harvard University, another at the University of Cape Town in South Africa, and achieved a 3.9 GPA in the LSAC Plus Pre-Law Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Law School. Unsurprisingly, he was named Student Activist of the Year by Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.

Between his college graduation and his entry into Law School, Tyriek returned to Life Pieces to offer the same guidance and leadership he had received as a student. He led Saturday Academy as our Program Coordinator and Education Assistant. Tyriek reflects that “LPTM helped shape my passion for education and education policy. Now I want to give our youth the same support and guidance that I had – so that they know who they are as young Black men.”

Clarence Wagner

Twenty years ago, Brother Clarence Wagner, now 28, joined the LPTM family after meeting Larry Quick and Mary Brown. According to Brother Clarence, this changed his life.

Twenty years ago, Brother Clarence Wagner, now 28, joined the LPTM family after meeting Larry Quick and Mary Brown. According to Brother Clarence, this changed his life. He explains that LPTM “introduced me to what you all know as the Shield of Faith, the Purpose, Premise, and the Process. It was the Process that stuck with me. In life you go through a process and how you handle the process will determine how you will grow up.” Through finding God and committing to LPTM values, Brother Clarence has grown up to create a life he believes is "everything that it is supposed to be.” After graduating high school, he attended ministry school and became an ordained minister this past December. He is also a loving husband and father of three children and is expecting a fourth. LPTM taught Brother Clarence at a young age “that with a little push, hope and opportunity are just around the corner.”

Tory’elle Coleman

Tory’elle has been in Life Pieces To Masterpieces since he was four years old. As he has grown, he has always looked out for those around him, and today he is a Junior Mentor for the Kings class.

Tory’elle has been in Life Pieces To Masterpieces since he was four years old. As he has grown, he has always looked out for those around him, and today he is a Junior Mentor for the Kings class. As a student, mentor, artist, speaker, advocate, citizen, and leader, “Brother Focus” rises to any occasion and makes his presence felt.

In 2015, while in the Legacy class, Tory’elle was featured for his artistic expression in an article from Bittersweet Monthly. He recognized his power as he said, “I feel like I am special because I am giving [to others.]”

In 2020, Tory’elle wrote an award-winning speech on community gun violence that caused the Board of WMATA to reflect on how to better ensure safety at bus stops throughout the city. Since schools shut down in March, he has been on WAMU, in the Washington Post, on national NPR news, and in a story syndicated by CNN, speaking out about the challenges Black youth in disadvantaged communities face with remote learning and social isolation while dealing with trauma in overcrowded homes and under-resourced communities and schools.

Through everything, Tory’elle has always been and continues to be a catalyst for positive change in the world.

Art by Life Pieces

Life Pieces To Masterpieces takes our name from the unique style of art that our youth collectively create — art that reflects their lived experiences as a way to facilitate positive, holistic development. In small groups, our young artists collaborate to decide on a life experience to make the topic of their painting and then make their masterpiece together by painting, cutting, arranging, and sewing pieces of canvas. Each colorful, sewn, acrylic-on-canvas collage illustrates a shared story and reflects our apprentices’ courage to create their own destiny – using art to turn their “life pieces” into a “masterpiece.”

CREATING ART… CHANGING LIVES

With love, security, and expression, we each can become a MASTERPIECE.