Community Mural Project in collaboration With the DIA's Teen Arts Council. Sunday, June 19th & 26th 2022
The Teen Community Mural Project was an all-inclusive, collaborative two-day mural event that took place on the south lawn near the John R Street entrance to the museum. Participants during the event helped in the painting process by filling in the mural in a paint by number style. The event was led by the DIA’s Teen Arts Council with the help and support of local artist Jozie Bullard who designed the mural. The mural celebrates the diversity, health, and empowerment of the Detroit community! The mural is now on display in the Student Lunchroom at the Detroit Institute of Arts.
Special Thanks to Stephanie Sucaet for recommending me to the Teen Council for this project, Sade Benjamin for offering me the position and opportunity, and Artist Kira Appelman for assisting me in the outlining and painting process throughout this project.
Follow the Teen Arts Council on IG @diateencouncil
North End Creators E. Grand Blvd. Banner project
Very excited to announce my collaboration with Vanguard Community Development in partnership with Good Done Daily. Good Done Daily is a graphic design studio serving non-profit, cultural, and public institutions across Detroit and Southeast Michigan. The project is called North End Creators.
Me and five other local Detroit-based artists were selected to design light pole banners for the East Grand Boulevard Streets cape Project!
My theme for this project was Musical Legacies stemmed from the North End here in Detroit. Inspired by Detroit Techno I focused my design on the Underground Resistance Musical Collective located on E Grand Boulevard. UR has been producing primarily Detroit techno since 1990 with a grungy four-track musical aesthetic, they are also renowned for their militant political and anti-corporate ethos.
The founders of underground resistance Mick Banks and Jeff Mills have been providing local artists with a platform for tools, equipment, and studios spaces to help preserve the roots of techno here in the city for a years and are still active in the community to this day.
When people view this work I want them to feel active and inspired to learn more about Detroit’s roots in Techno. I want this work to help people in the community feel proud of the history of the city and optimistic for the future.
Banners have been installed on the Boulevard!!
UR Stays Persistent, 2021
Created with Procreate
Wangari Maathai Mural Installation In collaboration with Arboretum Detroit
In 2020 I was invited to collaborate with Arboretum Detroit to paint a commemorative mural of the tree-planting superhero and environmental activist Wangari Maathai. The mural was installed over the summer in the arboretum's beautiful tree Nursery located on the East Side of Detroit. Unfortunately shortly after the Mural was installed On August 29, 2022, a storm passed through Detroit that had devastating impacts on various green spaces and homes. The winds during the storm violently dismembered trees all around the city. Including a large tree in the nursery where my mural of Wangari Maathai was installed.
When the tree came crashing down the gazebo surrounding the mural took a heavy blow shattering the mural into various pieces. I was completely devastated and heartbroken to think something so unthinkable could happen. I mean, what were the odds?
As I was grieving and reflecting on the reality of the damages something very spiritual happened to me. For a moment, a calmness came into my mind and body in this state of being I felt the spirit of Wangari. I could hear her voice faintly whispering within my subconscious saying, “ what had happened here in this nursery was the direct effect of climate change and its powerful ability to destroy ” she said “the hurt that I felt was real and a similar pain she once felt seeing her homelands in Kenya exploited and distorted due to the continuous effects of colonialism and deforestation” She told me “that this violence and harm was the fuel that pushed her to fight to protect the environment and that The tree that crashed down did not do nor want to do this, this was no natural disaster this was the physical manifestation and consequence of climate change that continues to poison and destroy the harmony of our home planet earth”.
After this realization, I felt clear-headed about what had happened.
This tragedy is yet another opportunity for embracing change and growing awareness of the climate crisis. Although saddened by this unfortunate event, I am optimistic for what is to come and blossoming through the process of reconstruction and repurposing this commemorative mural honoring the legacy of Wangari Maathai. This accident should not stop us from continuing the quite literal groundbreaking work that the Arb has been uplifting. The work is to restore and return natural spaces to the people and help the community widen awareness of our power to impact this vulnerable coexistence we share with the natural world around us.