Turning Tragedy into Triumph
The racial climate in the United States has once again reached a high level of attention. As we move into this technological age more and more examples of police brutality and injustice have been brought into the public eye. Every time videos are uploaded displaying police abusing their powers, tensions between black youth and police increase. Time and time again, news stories bring to light the too often fatal misconduct of police officers in the black community. As our countries young people strive to make something of themselves and find their place in society, black youth in our country are surrounded by constant reminders of their "criminal nature". This idea that is perpetuated by mass media, Hollywood, the music industry, and news outlets are teaching our black youth to hate themselves, each other, and especially the police. From this anger and hatred comes an overwhelming feeling of discouragement. A feeling of being up against overwhelming odds and lack of power over your own future. This problem of race must be addressed today in order for our country to move forward into the 21st century.
As an artist I understand the importance of presentation. The success of an art piece is largely to do with how it is presented to the public and the the amount of people it is presented to. This however does not only apply to art it also applies to ideas. In order to combat the current self image that is being perpetuated through mass media and social media today, we must bring to the forefront real examples of success, creativity, and empowerment amongst our black youth. Using this idea as my inspiration, I put together the "New Genesis" project. "New Genesis" is a short film featuring local artists from Madison, WI. Through ceramics, story telling, dance, and vocal performance, we came together to bring a new perspective on the black experience. Our goal was to turn tragedy into triumph, rage into revelation, pain into passion, depression into pure dopeness!! This project challenges the image of our black youth in popular media by showing our creativity, passion, and most of all our humanity. Through our self expression we have taken our self image into our own hands and tell our own story. With this project I hope to inspire others to do the same.
The "New Genesis" project was largely inspired by a tragedy that took place in Madison, WI which brought the racial tensions in this country from the tv screen to our doorstep. On March 6th, 2015, Tony Robinson was shot seven times and was killed at the hands of a Madison Police officer. This project is dedicated to him and his family in the hopes that they might find peace.