Posts tagged art.

wait hold up


so the Flaming Lips released that video without Erykah Badu’s consent?

and misled her about the nature of the video?

and everyone was ready to jump down HER throat for being naked again (wasn’t even her, was her sister)??


Once again, Black women as props.

She roasts them though in that letter of hers. “By the way you are an ass.” Reading this makes me want to hear waaay more of her perspective on art, like my takeaway message is The Flaming Lips are white dude assholes but pretty irrelevant, but damn Erykah has shit to say about what she’s creating.

@waynecoyne then… perhaps, next time u get an occasion to work with an artist who respects your mind/art, you should send at least a ROUGh version of the video u PLAN to release b4 u manipulate or compromise the artist’s brand by desperately releasing a poor excuse for shock and nudity that sends a convoluted message that passes as art( to some).
Even with Window Seat there was a method and thought process involved. I have not one need for publicity . I just love artistic dialogue . And just because an image is shocking does not make it art.
You obviously have a misconception of who I am artistically. I don’t mind that but…
By the way you are an ass.
Yu did everything wrong from the on set .

I attempted to resolve this respectfully by having conversations with u after the release but that too proved to be a poor excuse for art.
From jump,
You begged me to sit in a tub of that other shit and I said naw. I refused to sit in any liquid that was not water. But Out of RESPECT for you and the artist you ‘appear’ to be, I Didn’t wanna kill your concept , wanted u to at least get it out of your head . After all, u spent your dough on studio , trip to Dallas etc..

Consequently, brother, As a human I am disgusted with your what appears to be desperation and poor execution. And disregard for others . As a director I am unimpressed . As a sociologist I understand your type. As your fellow artist I am uninspired. As a woman I feel violated and underestimated.
Hope it works out for ya ,Wayne.
Really i could give a shit less.
Still love your live show tho.
And , you’re welcomed.
Lesson learned .

O, And on behalf of all the artists u have manipulated or plan to manipulate, find another way .
These things have been said out of necessity.
And if you don’t like it
you can KiSS MY Glittery ASS .

Tell em, gurrrl.

EBONY Magazine Commissions Street Artist Shepard Fairey to Illustrate Trayvon Martin - COLORLINES ›

I posted this link on facebook today, pointing out that Shepard Fairey has made his career from exploiting work by people of color, that he’s been allowed status as a gallery-worthy artist for doing what is considered vandalism when done by youth of color (and let’s face it, with considerably less talent), and that I’m disappointed that Ebony missed the opportunity to commission a piece by a Black artist. A white dude responded that he understands it’s problematic, but maybe it’s a good thing to make a piece that “transcends racial lines”. I have been on edge with race shit lately, enough that I haven’t been able to write anything. I’ve seriously been race-depressed and feeling like people of color are fucking doomed—my students are proof that we aren’t, but they’re also stressed out with end of the year catching up or giving up, and realizing all that they should be taught but aren’t.

So my roommate made me a cup of coffee and I spit all this out finally in response to the dude on facebook:


I can see where you’re coming from and appreciate the sentiment, but I think it still misses the point. Heads up though, because I am having an even more race-anxious couple weeks than usual, so this hits a raw nerve for me.

First off, it definitely isn’t the only piece of art I’ve seen about Trayvon; that’s part of why it’s disappointing. Black artists respond to our conditions all the time and are often passed up on commissioned work and other opportunities. Most other magazines (read: white-centered media) doing this wouldn’t faze me, but I would expect better from a magazine like Ebony. There’s actually a portrait of Trayvon in the hallway at the school where I work that a Black girl made for an art assignment, and it’s infinitely more moving than something sterile and disconnected like this. And that isn’t the only piece I’ve seen some of my students make about this, but when they do it they are making art about their own experiences and their communities’ experiences and how disempowered they usually feel in a city like this. Once I get my silk screen stuff set up better, I promised to help some students make “DON’T SHOOT ME” hoodies they designed—that’s what we’ve come to. At the very least I want to affirm their idea that they don’t deserve to be profiled, followed, shot, and then posthumously vilified—something I don’t have to put energy into affirming in my white students, and something that no one had to affirm in Shepard Fairey.

But about making it more palatable for white audiences (who are specifically NOT the audience of Ebony, and it’s rare to pull off media that isn’t implicitly geared toward white audiences), I think that’s really dangerous and disrespectful. Black people need space to mourn and defend ourselves and take care of each other. I spend way too much time fretting over my brother and my students and my neighborhood and all the ways they are targeted for this kind of violence. Trying to make race less a part of the telling of Trayvon’s story is dishonest. It doesn’t even make sense. It isn’t a story that transcends race, because it isn’t a story that would happen to just any youth regardless of race. Racial profiling isn’t a universal experience, and neither is the picture the media tried to paint of him being a “thug.” None of that would have happened to a white kid, and pretending it does is an insult to what youth of color deal with.

If white people need to be eased into respecting, understanding, and listening to Black people’s lived experiences, then go ahead and do the work of easing them into it, but don’t expect us to tell our stories dishonestly to make them easier to swallow—we don’t have the luxury of toning shit down when we’re living it. It honestly scares me that we’ve internalized white people’s desire for us to whitewash and tone down our stories so much that we’re now doing it in our storytelling to each other in our own media.

I’m kind of unsure about the thing about Fairey’s Obama posters being iconic. Of course they are, but Obama means lots of complicated things for Black people that he doesn’t for white people. Again, not feelings and experiences that are going to transcend racial lines. You might have said more than you realized by choosing the word “iconic”—these are more than icons to Black people. (ETA: I’m pretty grumpy about Obama personally, but again, it’s way more complicated than an icon can be and I can understand Black people who support him for equally complicated reasons.)

And it’s specifically because of Fairey’s race politics (or lack thereof) that I don’t respect him as an artist. You can read a whole lot more on Fairey’s exploitation of people of color’s art and histories here:

Federal agents and DEA just came through my neighborhood and arrested over 100 people, almost all black men, including some I know. Yale and its real estate interests are literally demolishing Black kids’ playgrounds and Black families’ houses to make condos. My students are at the point in the school year where they’re realizing just how much they’ve been denied by the school system and learning how to point out the whitewashing of their textbooks (well, if we had the money for textbooks). This is the shit I’m losing sleep over. I can’t guarantee my students that they will be safe from racial violence, since many of them have experienced it already, or that our school will value their lived experiences as young people of color, but I’m at least not going to be dishonest with them and pretend we’re not talking about race when we are, that we’re not talking about violence when we are, or that we need to put anything on hold for white people’s idea of what’s polite and palatable and slowed down enough. Our shit is way too urgent for that.


Myra Greene, “Untitled,” from the character recognition series, 2004-2007. The phenomenal photographer Greene writes,

Confronted with an upswell of bigotry both personal and public, I was forced to ask myself, what do people see when they look at me. Am I nothing but black? Is that skin tone enough to describe my nature and expectation in life? Do my strong teeth make me a strong worker? Does my character resonate louder than my skin tone? Using a photographic process linked to the times of ethnographic classification, I repeatedly explore my ethnic features. The lessons learned are haunting and frightening in these modern times.

(via guerrillamamamedicine)


Jemima’s Revenge”  cut paper & acrylic on large canvas 2010

whaaat this is all my dreams come true! Although she probably woulda had some belly?

(via so-treu)


The art: Gran Fury, Kissing Doesn’t Kill: Greed and Indifference Do, 1989.

The news: “Chronicling AIDS activists’ darkest days: Harvard project collects an oral history,” by Martine Powers in the Boston Globe. The story discusses Harvard’s purchase of the oral history archive of ACT UP. Harvard’s involvement with the archive started via then-Harvard Art Museums curator Helen Molesworth, who curated this exhibition and who later helped initiate the acquisition. (Molesworth is now the chief curator of the Institute of Contemporary Art Boston). You can view the archive here.

The source: Collection of the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, Washington University, St. Louis; the New York Public Library; and Victoria and Albert Museum, London.


My own purpose as a printmaker is to create art as a voice for the voiceless, especially disenfranchised people of the world. My artistic practice is focused on the screen-printed political poster, my medium of choice because of its ability to be produced in multiples and thus exist in multiple locations. The poster format allows me to awaken consciousness, to critique daily reality and to actively work to transform it. My artwork reflects national and international issues – such as the impacts of war, the environment, and immigration policies. I develop posters, often in collaboration with community-based organizations, and post them in public spaces – schools, community centers, and bulletin boards. -Favianna Rodriguez

FINALLY trying to have some free time and work on my zine again, and this is helping.

(via fabianromero2013-deactivated201)


I’ve been really inspired by Jacob Lawrence’s work lately, particularly his “Migration” series—there is so much to work with there.

Image Sources:
1. MoMA.
2. RoGallery.
3. Danforth.
4. Wadsworth Atheneum.

and now, decompress.

(via noraaajane)

#art  #cat lyfe  


Today, on the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, we are reminded that behind each piece of indigenous cloth or textile there is a story and a personal experience of an individual and a community. The theme of this year “Indigenous designs: celebrating stories and cultures, crafting our own future” highlights the need for preservation and revitalization of indigenous cultures, including their art and intellectual property. It is also an opportunity to showcase indigenous artists, as well as cooperatives or businesses taking inspiration from indigenous peoples’ customs and the indigenous communities who may have participated or benefited from this. 

Fact sheets and documents

Secretary General’s message

Photo gallery

The UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

(via indigenousrev)


The art: Joy Garnett, Leap, 2003.

The news: “Looting ‘fueled by social exclusion,’” by Alexandra Topping in The Guardian.

The source: Courtesy of the artist. To see more paintings from Garnett’s “Riot” series, click here.

#art  #london  #fire  #riot  #Guardian