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#blacklivesmatter: C1 Artists Respond

Since the Ferguson and Eric Garner grand jury decisions this fall, members of the C1 staff and many of our affiliated artists have found various ways to participate in the #blacklivesmatter movement. Whether by joining the protests happening around the country, responding through their art, or posting their perspectives on social media, artists are making their voices heard in important ways. We’ve collected some of those responses and perspectives here – they are an important reminder that the fight for equality and social justice must continue into the new year, and beyond.

Earlier this month, several local performers, including C1 affiliated artist Obehi Janice, organized the Creative Witness rally. Actor Brandon Green performed the piece below at the rally:



Walter Sickert from The Army of Broken Toys, one of our SHOCKHEADED PETER collaborators, posted two images he created on Facebook (click to enlarge):


Another bandmate from The Army of Broken Toys, Rachel, posted a message on Facebook. The whole thing is definitely worth checking out, but here’s a small excerpt:

I dress nicely all of the time. And mostly it’s because I like to look nice, but a small part of it is the weight of representing whatever minority I happen to mean to you (queer, black, left handed, violist, whatever). It’s weird knowing that I’m probably the only one like me that you’re going to interact with, and I feel like I should leave a good impression.

If you’re reading this, you’re probably in the same liberal north-eastern bubble that I am, and racism is still your problem. Just like it’s my problem. It’s not an issue from 50 years ago. It is happening in subtle and tangible ways all around us right now. It is definitely happening to all of your black friends, and probably the rest of your friends too…in fact…you are probably responsible for a little bit of it.

Performer/writer Tory Bullock posted two videos, “Why I’m NOT Mad About Ferguson” and a follow-up called “The CURE for Racism.” The first video is posted below:



HowlRound recently featured Hands Up: 6 Playwrights, 6 Testaments, a collection of ten-minute monologues commissioned by Keith Josef Adkins of The New Black Fest. Playwright Idris Goodwin (HOW WE GOT ON) has a piece in the series, but the full collection is worth a read.

HowlRound is also streaming We Must Breathe: A Response from Chicago Playwrights and Poets, presented by Victory Gardens Theatre, where “members of Chicago’s artistic community to share their views on discrimination, race and inequality, followed by a discussion about these social issues.” This event wasn’t Boston specific, but C1 knows and loves many of the artists involved in the broadcast and online discussion, and the conversation is certainly relevant to us all.

Have you been joining the #blacklivesmatter movement? Share your own artistic responses and stories with us on Twitter and Facebook!