I founded Positive Black Images in 1989 shortly after purchasing my first home in Dallas, TX.
Upon doing so, I became intent on finding fine art that reminded me of the life I had left behind. I wanted pieces that not only reflected the nostalgia of the Mississippi Delta; I wanted a collection that was representative of the African American culture, past, present, and future.
I began to visit several galleries in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. While I found a number of pieces that I liked, I also noticed a certain scarcity in what I was looking for and was subsequently able to find. As I traveled from one gallery to another, I had the good fortune of meeting several talented local artists. As I developed relationships with various artists, it became apparent that the perceived scarcity of the art I was seeking was not the end, it was the beginning.
I decided to be a part of the solution and help create the products I desired. After collaborating with a number of artists I had met, we felt we could build a fine art collection that was representative of the fullness of our culture and the black experience. Always directing my thrust was the belief that art was not simply a financial investment but a cultural investment. It could serve as a teaching tool for today’s youth and tomorrow’s leaders. On a part-time basis, I started to publish and distribute African-American art to PBI dealers, galleries and gift shops across the country, and customers at various APO and FPO addresses internationally.
During this time, I was employed fulltime with IBM. While I had become proficient at providing technical and marketing support to a wide range of customers, I realized I had two passions. I loved the excitement of new technology, engineering, and marketing but I had also developed a passion for positive black images. My day job soon became the primary vehicle I used to fund my hobby and soon to become business.
For 14 years, we published and distributed art that was culturally inspiring, uplifting and beautiful. As the Positive Black Images business grew through the 1990’s, I continued to assume positions of increased responsibility in corporate America. In 2004, it became apparent to me that I could no longer traverse both worlds and maintain a healthy work life balance. As a consequence, I decided to place a strategic pause on the part-time business and commit myself to a full-time career in engineering, program management and portfolio management until my retirement in 2020. I am blessed and thankful to have celebrated 35 years of service in my chosen profession.
In that spirit, in 2020, I started Merritt Investment Trust (MIT), a limited liability company that includes 3 businesses.
MIT Management Services provides Program Management Office (PMO) consulting and outsourcing services;
MIT Real Estate Services provides tenant and buyer services; and
Positive Black Images provides the gift of fine art and commentary.
Positive Black Images takes pride in offering you the finest in African-American art. We are particularly proud to offer you a collection that is representative of our culture. We have focused on, but not limited ourselves to some of the following subject matter: a) Family Life, b) Religious Themes, c) Music and Rhythm, d) Educational Pursuits, e) Buffalo Soldiers, f) Fraternities and Sororities and more.
Our collection of fine art and gift accessories includes originals, open and limited edition prints, full color and black and white reproductions, a full line of exciting Christmas, All Occasion and Humorous greeting cards, collectibles and other home decor.
In addition to the products mentioned above, please check out our "You Have To See It, To Be It" blog. This blog is intended to provoke thought and help effectuate positive change.
You deserve the best, and we are absolutely committed to giving you our best. We look forward to working with you!
Dexter R. Merritt Sr.