Friday, February 27, 2009

Ever Felt This Way???

Peace Yo,

It's 6:07p and I am tired and sapped to say the least. Life keeps giving some serious tests, and every once in a while, you just need to sit down and try to take it all in.

This week I found out that one of my cousins died in a horrendous death, he died in an abandoned house that burned down last week. His story represents the meaning behind Lifestyles of the Ignored. What's more maddening is that he was ignored by his own family members. That is until last week.

His mother and siblings lived probably 15 minutes away from an abandoned home. How can so called "loved ones" allow this to happen?

I remember seeing a similar incident on the news where a homeless man died on the streets. The family did not live too far and frankly no one cared.

Lifestyles of the Ignored does not only strike at the society as a whole, but on the inside of the family as well because most of society's problems start with the family. We teach traditions, ideas, cultures and so forth, and when one does not follow the pattern, they find themselves thrown out of the inner circle. People become "ashamed" of them, and fail to offer assistance at the least. But as soon as the person dies, we all cry(well some of us do) as if we cared. Get real

Anyway here is a posting of one of my pieces. Take care everyone.


Ever felt this way, like you're on a journey, and things are just not going the way you would hope or wished they would?

The origin of this picture comes from a newspaper article, in which a man was convicted of raping a woman, which he did not commit. He was sentenced to several years in jail simply because a woman pointed him out in the photo lineup the police displayed. Just like that, huh. Somebody can point you out, and with the right lawyers, you're in the pokie.

Now the man is out of prison, but he is homeless. He collects crushed cans for his food money. There's more to the story than this, but I wanted to focus on this part of the story. There were questionable decisions made on his part after he was freed, but I want to focus on the aspect of road blocks or injustices that we go through. Sometimes we talk amongst each other about people who are down and out, and all it takes is one person to conjure a negative story, and the whole vibe changes. For example, I can talk about the homeless to a group of people, and all it takes is one person to talk about a bad experience with some street people, and the whole vibe gets lost. People start saying "Yeah, that happened to me too" , and before you know it we are right back at square one, which is actually nowhere.

Because in this society, we are taught to kick a man when he's down. It's the easiest thing to do. It's a heck of a lot easier than knocking a man down, especially when the one who needs to be knocked down is the person in the wrong. And we are also taught that a man who is down is a man who is in weakness. But that may only be temporary.

Most of my pictures will deal with people who are oppressed and down and out people from all walks of life. The darker skin pictures are indicative of the struggles that we go through in particular, and the fleshtones will indicate a more universal message. I have spoken and/or written to people of different nationalities, and we share a similar issue, but the problem is most of us are so absorbed in "our own" struggle, we don't see the strength we could possibly possess as one human family. Our struggle as people of color is unique, but it's not like we're the only ones going through oppression, therefore when I use fleshtones it is to symbolise the basic human struggle.

My pictures may also touch a lot of people the wrong way, but isn't art supposed to challenge anyway? Make ya jump out that comfort zone? Or is it all about the pretty stuff?

Take care y'all

1 comment:

  1. I'm sorry to hear about your cousin. As soon as I saw this painting I felt a knife in my stomach because feeling like you've hit rock bottom is ... i can't even find the right words. I absolutely cannot stand it when one person's negative account of another person causes prejudice or creates a stigma against a whole group.


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