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Eminem Freestyle Chumph Takedown

Eminen evicerates the Chumphshit at the BET Awards…

 
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Posted by on October 11, 2017 in Music, From Way Back When to Now

 

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Emmit Till…And Racial Re-Appropriation in Art

Now it is “wrong” fora white artist to paint a black subject? To express in art anything about black history?

Methinks there are indeed too snowflakery about and way too much snowfuckery…

That New Jim Crow – Sometime he seem to work both sides of the street,

Protesters Want This Painting of Emmett Till Destroyed—Because the Artist Is White

Artist Hannah Black has launched a petition calling on the Whitney to remove and destroy the painting, Dana Schutz’s ‘Open Casket,’ currently on show at the museum’s Biennial show.

Before it opened to the public, the 2017 Whitney Biennial was lauded by critics for deftly addressing the political and cultural turbulence of our times—not just the Trump era, but our country’s broader socio-political climate and racial tensions during the Obama years as well.

A group of protesters have arrived at a different conclusion: the Biennial has exploited the black experience by displaying a white artist’s painting of Emmett Till, the teenager who was brutally murdered by two white men in 1955.

British artist Hannah Black has launched a petition calling on the Whitney to remove and destroy the painting, Dana Schutz’s Open Casket, which depicts Till’s bludgeoned face as seen in a photograph of his open-casket funeral service.

A handful of people also protested the painting in person last Friday, the Biennial’s opening day, standing in front of it to block it from public view.

More than thirty people have signed the petition, which began circulating Facebook on Monday afternoon. “That even the disfigured corpse of a child was not sufficient to move the white gaze from its habitual cold calculation is evident daily and in a myriad of ways, not least the fact that this painting exists at all,” the petition reads.

A number of original signatories’ names were scrubbed on Monday because they were white; responding to criticism, Black commented on her Facebook post that it was “better to include only black signatories.” The artist declined to speak to The Daily Beast beyond what she wrote in her public statement, which argues that it is “not acceptable for a white person to transmute Black suffering into profit and fun.”

In a statement to The Daily Beast, Schutz said the painting was “never for sale and never will be.” Schutz, who has two other paintings on view at the Biennial, said she created the painting in August 2016, “after a long, violent summer of mass shootings, rallies filled with hate speech, and an ever-escalating number of camera phone videos of black men being shot execution style by police.”

 
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Posted by on July 28, 2017 in The Post-Racial Life

 

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Bloody Sunday…And “Make America Great Again”

Wow…A sign of things to come.

Billboard featuring Trump slogan uses ‘Bloody Sunday’ image

The billboardA billboard in Mississippi featuring Donald Trump's "Make America Great Again" slogan and photos from "Bloody Sunday," one of the most violent attempts to stop the Civil Rights movement in 1965 is drawing criticism from state and local officials. Photo: Twitter

A billboard in Mississippi featuring Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan and photos from “Bloody Sunday,” one of the most violent attempts to stop the Civil Rights movement in 1965 is drawing criticism from state and local officials.

The billboard near Pearl, Miss., and put up by a group called For Freedoms, says “Make American Great Again” – Trump’s campaign slogan – and features as art images from “Bloody Sunday,” one of the most violent days of the Civil Rights movement.

The original photo dates to March 7, 1965, when police and protesters faces off over voting rights in heavily segregated Selma, Ala. Future U.S. Rep. John Lewis was among those beaten by police and 14 people were killed.

Hank Thomas, one of the artists behind the billboard, told WJTV that he knows Trump likes attention and sought to use the art to have an impact on the political landscape.

“I really want us to start to ask harder questions like well what do you mean when you say make America great again? That has not yet been asked,” Thomas said.

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant called the billboard reprehensible.

Pearl Mayor Brad Rogers asked Lamar Advertising to remove the billboard, even though it isn’t vulgar and is protected freedom of speech.

 
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Posted by on November 22, 2016 in Second American Revolution

 

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Nick Cave’s “Soundsuits” – A Response to Racial Profiling

You have to see these to believe them – they are incredible!

The why of their creation, is a much darker story.

Stunning ‘Soundsuits’ Address The Realities Of Racial Profiling In America

“The soundsuits hide gender, race, class and they force you to look at the work without judgment.”

Artist Nick Cave’s work is best described as an explosion of color, texture and noise. Born in Fulton, Missouri, in 1959, Cave is known for his soundsuits ― wearable artworks that can be displayed as still objects or incorporated into wild performances as costumery.

Drenched in electric hues and hallucinatory patterns ― and marked by their ability to produce sound when individuals like Cave don the elegant objects ― it’s easy to view the suits as whimsical ware. But, according to Cave, the suits are anything but “fun.”

“They come from a dark place,” he explains in Episode #239 of ART21. In fact, the fashion-infused sculptures originated as metaphorical suits of armor in response to the brutal treatment of Rodney King in 1992. Cave made his first suit shortly after video footage captured the unlawful beating of King at the hands of Los Angeles Police Department officers.

The suit was simple, consisting of a sheath of twigs that rustled as the wearer moved. Cave has since created around 500 subsequent suits, many more decadent than the original. Most, if not all, reflect on Cave’s identity as a black man, confronting his experiences with racial profiling and police brutality.

Cave says that his suits represent his desire to “lash out” in response to personal experiences, as well as sorrowful moments in American history. “And if I do, lashing out for me is creating this,” he explains in the video above, gesturing toward his work. “The soundsuits hide gender, race, class and they force you to look at the work without judgment.”

The “Here Hear” exhibition of Cave’s soundsuits was previously on view at Detroit’s Cranbrook Art Museum, the museum connected with the artist’s alma mater. In a previous interview with The Huffington Post, Cave described the city he once called home as vibrant and alive, but noticeably different from when he last attended school in 1989. He was, he explained to ART21, the only minority there in 1988.

The ART 21 episode above is titled “Thick Skin,” referencing Cave’s suits’ ability to serve as “an alien second skin […] allowing viewers to look without bias toward the wearer’s identity.” Referred to as “vehicles for empowerment,” the suits stand out amid the 21st century’s array of creative political work, breathing new meaning into the possibility of addressing prejudice through visual art.

 

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Painting Injustice in Louisiana

This one starts with the case of Mac Phipps, jailed in a state, Louisiana,  that incarcerates more of it’s citizens than any country in the world since Pol Pot’s Cambodia.

Her Son Is In Prison, And She Paints The Faces Of A Broken Justice System

The brushstrokes in Sheila Phipps‘ paintings tell the story of a broken criminal justice system in Louisiana — a state notorious for having the highest incarceration rate in the world.

It’s a mission that Phipps, a visual artist who’s been painting since the 1980s, took up after her son, McKinley “Mac” Phipps, a former No Limit hip-hop artist, wassentenced to 30 years in prison for a 2000 nightclub shooting.

“My son was wrongfully convicted in 2001 and is now serving time for a crime he didn’t commit,” Sheila Phipps said.

The visual artist said that in the beginning she could barely face the pain of her son spending such a large portion of his life behind bars. To cope, she went to her art room, took a brush in hand, and in a series of meticulous strokes captured the element missing from her life — her son — on canvas.

“I was frustrated, and it helped me deal with the stress of everything,” Phipps told The Huffington Post.

When Phipps finished the painting of her son, she initially viewed it as a personal accomplishment. After all, it was intended to be therapeutic — a brief escape from the harsh reality of the situation. However, an emptiness remained. It prompted her to capture not only her son’s story but also those of other inmates in Louisiana who are in similar situations.

“I knew my son was not the only one who was a victim of the criminal justice system,” she said. “So I started to research other cases where individuals were convicted with questionable evidence or received excessive sentences.”

Phipps said her son ultimately became the inspiration behind her series of portraits of incarcerated men. Although she never intended her personal expression for public view, she gradually began showing her paintings as they emerged, gathering them in a series titled “Injustice Xhibition.”

The exhibit features seven incarcerated men: McKinley “Mac” Phipps Jr., Warren Scott III, Jerome “Skee” Smith, Earl Truvia, Stanley Stirgus, Rogers LaCaze Sr., and Jamil Joyner. …Read More Here

 
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Posted by on March 31, 2016 in BlackLivesMatter

 

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Art Student Hangs Segregation Signs as a Project

If you are older than about 55 and lived in the South – you most likely remember the “Separate but Equal” signs hung at everything from Retail stores, to Public Parks assigning separate facilities to black and white. It was called Segregation – and it ruled the lives of people in many locations in the South.

An Art student,, working on a project called “Art in Public Places” hung signs like this around the University of Buffalo campus. Needless to say, they caused a bit of an uproar.

Art Student Hangs ‘Black Only’ And ‘White Only’ Signs Around University Campus

On Wednesday, Sept. 16, students of the University of Buffalo were shocked to find “White Only” and “Black Only” signs hung near campus bathrooms. Students were sickened and traumatized by the apparent act of racism; by 1 p.m., the police had received 11 phone calls regarding the signage.

It was later revealed, however, that the signs reminiscent of the Jim Crow era were put on display by graduate fine arts student Ashley Powell, who is black, as part of an art project.

Before Powell admitted to hanging the signs at a Black Student Union (BSU) meeting on Wednesday night, students and faculty were left wondering about the source of the racist designations. “We didn’t know it was an art project, it could’ve been an act of terrorism,” a student explained to The Spectrum, the independent campus newspaper.

When Powell revealed that she was behind the act, a project for her “Installation: Urban Spaces” class, which requires students to install art in a public space, many students stormed out of the BSU assembly, some in tears. “It brought up feelings of a past that our generation has never seen, which I think is why it was so shocking for us to see,” Micah Oliver, president of the BSU, told ABC.

As an artist, I respect you as an artist,” said student Jefry Taveras in the BSU meeting. “But you should know racism isn’t art, it’s a reality and traumatizing.”

In a statement to The Spectrum, Powell explained the reasoning behind her installation, which addresses issues of non-white suffering and white privilege. “I apologize for the extreme trauma, fear, and actual hurt and pain these signs brought about,” she wrote. “I apologize if you were hurt, but I do not apologize for what I did.”

She went on to expand upon the motivations behind the project, which was intended to spark outrage and discomfort in viewers.

“My art practice is not an act of self-policing meant to hide my rage. Instead, it uses pain, narrative, and trauma as a medium of expression and as grounds for arguing a need for change in the first place. I understand that I forced people to feel pain that they otherwise would not have had to deal with in this magnitude. But I ask, should non-white people not express or confront their trauma? Should we be content with not having to confront that pain? We know it exists, and it often causes many of us immediate discomfort. Should we not be in a state of crushing discomfort?

These signs made you feel discomfort. They are tangible objects that forced you to revisit your past, to confront your present, and to recognize here and now the underlying social structures that are directly responsible for your pain and suffering. This project makes forceful what has been easy for you to ignore.”

University of Buffalo released the following statement regarding the incident: “After an initial investigation by University Police, it has been determined that the signs posted in Clemens Hall were part of a student art project. The University is continuing to review this matter through appropriate university policies and procedures.”

Powell is far from the first artist to toe the fine line between critiquing racism and embodying it. Brett Bailey’s “Exhibit B,” a performance recreating the “human zoos” of the 19th century, Ti-Rock Moore’s sculpture of Michael Brown’s dead body, and Kenneth Goldsmith’s poetic reading of Michael Brown’s autopsy have all caused dire outrage. However, it should be mentioned that the three artists listed above are white.

I don’t believe it matters whether the three artists mentioned above are white – or that Ashley Powell is black. Her installation indeed is a reality check on an era well within the lifespan of many black and white folks in America. It may be psychologically traumatizing to some – as are the works of renowned street artist Banksy. But it was a reality for the majority of the 20th century – a reality which hasn’t quite faded away to the dustbins of history…

And there seems to be no shortage of folks in some places who would willingly return to it.

 
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Posted by on September 20, 2015 in Black History, The New Jim Crow, The Post-Racial Life

 

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George Zimmerman, Confederate Flags, And Muslim Free Zones

OooooooKay….Right wing hero murderer George Zimmerman is at it again, profiting from bigots.

You can read all about it here.

 
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Posted by on August 18, 2015 in Domestic terrorism

 

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Signs of Life in Detroit

Been hearing rumbles of this for a while. The first thing I heard about was some very creative groups working in the area of urban farming, who were leading the country with revolutionary concepts on hanging urban landscapes. It appears that Detroit may be “catching fire” again with creative talent, drawn by the low rent, and possibilities to chart their own space.

Two years ago, the renowned graffiti artist Revok moved from LA to Detroit Josh Harkinson

Graffiti Artist Revok

Detroit may be down… But it ain’t dead quite yet.

How to Bring Detroit Back From the Grave

“Warning! This city is infested by crackheads. Secure your belongings and pray for your life.” So reads a hand-scrawled sign just off I-75 in Detroit, where a post-apocalyptic cityscape of looted and charred homes has come to represent a sort of sarcophagus of the American Dream.

But beyond simply fueling murders and bribery scandals, decades of hard times have finally birthed new signs of life here in the Motor City, as its gritty neighborhoods attract a burgeoning community of artists, hipsters, and socially minded entrepreneurs. “With a little bit of motivation, you can make anything happen here,” says Jason Williams, a.k.a. Revok, a renowned Los Angeles graffiti artist turned Detroiter, whose lively murals adorn walls not far from the crackhead sign. “It’s all about the reality that you create for yourself.”

For those willing to brave the nation’s most dangerous major city, Detroit offers a tight-knit and successful creative community. The birthplace of Motown and techno still manages to turn out chart-busting artists like Eminem and Jack White. And growing numbers of bohemians have found that a few thousand dollars will buy them a classic brick townhouse or a loft in an art-deco skyscraper. Where old buildings have fallen, hundreds of urban gardens sprout.

Detroit is hardly the first city to lure urban homesteaders with access to cheap and artfully crumbling buildings. The same formula revitalized (and eventually gentrified) neighborhoods such as the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn and San Francisco’s Mission and Dogpatch districts. The big difference in Detroit, however, is that its economy blew a rod long ago, triggering an exodus of more than half the city’s population—last year, it lost another 28,000 people. Barely a quarter of those who remain have a degree from a four-year college. During my recent visit, local elected leaders were warning that the city could run out of money—within the week.

Last year, in Guernica magazine, Wayne State literature professor John Patrick Leary cautioned against what he called “Detroitism,” the fetish for urban decay mixed with utopianism, “where bohemians from expensive coastal cities can have the $100 house and community garden of their dreams.” But Detroit offers much more. Here is a city that foretold the woes of America’s middle class—and spent decades searching for a path out of its recessionary wilderness. Forget the clichés about heirloom tomatoes and check out these four examples of creative Detroiters who are making a difference

The Power House Gina Reichert

Meet the Power House and the new “Hood Cat” changing neighborhoods a brick at a time

 
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Posted by on June 16, 2012 in The Post-Racial Life

 

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French Hip Hop?

There is an old saying that a “Lie can get half way around the world before Truth has a chance to get its pants on”.

There is one thing faster – music.

Festival celebrates French hip-hop

Since the founding of Washington, it has been tres facile to sense the French influence in the circles, grids and diagonals bequeathed by Pierre L’Enfant, and in recent years, it seems no office is more than steps away from a French (or French-named) place to buy a croissant.

You’d think Sylvain Cornevaux, cultural director of the Alliance Francaise, would consider his mission accomplished now that it’s so easy to pick up baguettes in our French-formatted city. He doesn’t.

“The bread, the architecture — these things are French, and these things are very nice, but they are also very old,” Cornevaux said. And so this month, in an effort to connect the District’s streets with the New France, he has organized a festival of French hip-hop dance.

Oui. French hip-hop dance. Does that sound oxymoronic? Au contraire, Cornevaux explains. Given the influx of immigrants from former French colonies and the general French fascination with urban American life, hip-hop culture caught on in France but quickly merged with higher-brow art. The result is choreography that’s now being exported back to the United States. And thus we have “Urban Corps: A Transatlantic Hip-Hop Festival,” which continues through Friday, May 25, at venues in Arlington County and the District.

“It is very interesting, because hip-hop was born in the U.S. but it has quickly developed in another way in France,” Cornevaux said. “Hip-hop was still an emerging artistic field in the beginning of the ’80s, but at the beginning of the ’90s, many hip-hop artists started working a lot with classical choreographers and with artistic directors of theaters. [Dancers] kept their hip-hop skills but transformed to show them in a contemporary manner. They incorporate hip-hop, mime and Capoeira,” a Brazilian blend of athletic dance and martial arts.

The Alliance, a nonprofit group dedicated to promoting French language and culture, worked hard to obtain visas for 13 dancers affiliated with four French companies, and each troupe received funding from its home town or region to cover travel. The city of Nantes even paid to ship extensive sets for KLP Company’s show “Tour of Duty” to that Atlas Performing Arts Center.

“Tour of Duty” may sound like a show inspired by military battles or war video games, but according to press materials and the company’s Web site, it’s actually a narrative tracing the history of hip-hop in Brooklyn, beginning in 1960, and recounting years of gang wars and communities coming together.

Junious Brickhouse, founder of the District-based hip-hop collective Urban Artistry, is a bit skeptical about the storyline — Brooklyn? What about the South Bronx? — but suspects that the dancing will be on target. “I’ll be honest. I think there are some things that get lost in translation,” Brickhouse said, “but at the end of the day, I just want to get down with some nonverbal art.”…

Chez Chez…Indeed.

 
 

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Juvenile Incarceration

"Juvenile in Justice" photo project captures kids behind bars

The above pic is from a series called “Juvenile in Justice”. They don’t say what this particular kid did to get in that cell – but some of the other pictures are of juveniles who have committed extremely violent crimes.

Worth a look.

 
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Posted by on May 3, 2012 in The Post-Racial Life

 

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Elizabeth Catlett

A Master Artist passed Monday. Mrs Catlett was 96 years old.

My Time With Elizabeth Catlett

By: Harriette Cole

I was a young, wide-eyed magazine editor just starting my career when I had the great fortune to meet the artist Elizabeth Catlett. I was working at Essence magazine in the lifestyle department, and one of my beats was the art world. I would go to art openings all over New York City, learning about and meeting black artists who were presenting their work.

It was a fascinating experience, for so many reasons. Even though I grew up in a household where we appreciated fine art and did have paintings made by local black artists hanging on our walls, I had no idea that there were actual black masters. The only masters I knew about were Van Gogh, Matisse, Manet, Picasso and such. I knew nothing of Romare Bearden or Jacob Lawrence — or Elizabeth Catlett — back then. I had no idea that we had our own masters.

I believe it was the art dealer June Kelly, who has long had a gallery in Manhattan, who introduced me to Catlett. In the early 1980s, Catlett was already an acclaimed artist whose work — clay, wood and stone sculptures as well as woodcuts and linocuts — was housed in museums and galleries across the country and beyond.

What a humble woman she was. Gracious and generous, Catlett took time to talk to me about the work she had created thus far, which uniquely documented the stories of African-American people. I remember being mesmerized by the woodcuts and linocuts that she made.

With her hands and a few special tools, she transformed simple pieces of material into stories of triumph and struggle. The piece that drew me in the most is one of her most famous, the 1952 linocut Sharecropper.This carving represents a strong black woman wearing a full-brim hat and proper coat. Her face exudes the power, strength and inward glance of one who is a survivor.

As I crafted the first of several stories I would write about Catlett, I continued my fascination with her, her work and that piece. In those early years, I would see her at various openings for her work in New York and Los Angeles. The artist Samella Lewis wrote a book about Catlett, The Art of Elizabeth Catlett, and I visited with the two of them in Los Angeles when the book came out.

I feel so fortunate that over the years our paths intersected many times. Once, early on, Catlett was visiting New York City with her husband, the Mexican artist Francisco Mora, whom she fondly called Pancho, and she invited me to visit with them at her apartment in lower Manhattan…(more)

 
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Posted by on April 5, 2012 in Black History

 

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A Confederate Flag Taken Down… By Neo-confederates

Confederate Flag Art Removed After Complaints

Apparently the guardians of the Southern Myth didn’t like a painting by Gainsville State College, located in Gainsville, Georgia by  Professor Stanley Bermudez. Seems Professor Bermudez made the mistake of painting what he felt when he saw the flag…

Neo-confederate and hate groups promptly voice their ire, intimidating the College to remove the flag from the Art Exhibit.

GSC professor teaches the importance of art as his own work comes under fire

“When I was growing up in South America, we had the freedom of expression in my country. But when Hugo Chávez came into power, he started manipulating that freedom. Everything from the media to art was being censored,” said Bermudez, who is from Venezuela.

“Anyone who made a negative comment about the government … was being attacked or repressed. I don’t agree with that kind of censorship.”

As an artist, Bermudez often takes to canvas to express his feelings and thoughts. One of his most recent works, “Heritage?,” illustrates what comes to his mind when he thinks of the Confederate flag.

The red flag, with the blue St. Andrew’s Cross emblazoned across the front adorned with white stars, was carried onto the battlefield by Confederate soldiers during the Civil War. While some people argue that the flag represents Southern heritage and pride, other people — Bermudez included — see it in a less positive light. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 4, 2011 in Domestic terrorism, The New Jim Crow

 

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World Cup… Soccer 1 – Sex 0

It would seem that some of the predictions and dire warnings didn’t pan out…

Soccer fans shun hookers for art’s sake

The influx of thousands of soccer fans would increase demand on South African sex workers; at least that was the belief of a leading expert prior to the start of the 2010 World Cup.

But it seems fans of the beautiful game that traveled to the Rainbow Nation have created a flop in sex-worker business — leaving prostitutes out-of-pocket and out of work — in favor of more high-brow pursuits.

“The World Cup has been devastating. We thought it was going to be a cash cow but it’s chased a lot of the business away. It’s been the worst month in my company’s history,” the owner and founder of one of Johannesburg’s most exclusive escort companies told CNN.

“No one is interested in sex at the moment. I think we’ve had three customers who traveled here for the World Cup which has seen my group’s business drop by 80 percent. I enjoyed watching the games, but I can’t wait for everyone to just go home now!” the madam, who works under the alias of “Tori,” added.

The behavior of fans in South Africa has run contrary to what was predicted prior to the start of the tournament after David Bayever told World Cup organizers in March it was feared that up to 40,000 extra prostitutes could converge in the host nation to meet the expected demand.

Bayever, deputy chairperson of South Africa’s Central Drug Authority (CDA) that advises on drug abuse but also works with prostitutes, warned: “Forty-thousand new prostitutes. As if we do not have enough people of our own, we have to import them to ensure our visitors are entertained.”

But the tournament in 2010, if anything, has seen the modern-day soccer fan attracted to art galleries and museums over brothels.

A trend that has seen a drop in revenue across the board for the prostitution industry, which is illegal in South Africa. “Zobwa,” the chairperson of Sisonke — an action group representing around 70 street prostitutes in Johannesburg — said business had been down over the last month. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on July 10, 2010 in News

 

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