political artists

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#BeingBlackandMuslim Portrait Series by Bobby Rogers

Visual artist and photographer Bobby Rogers’ latest portrait series #BeingBlackandMuslim taps on members of the Black Muslim community to share their harrowing experiences with, well, simply being who they are. 

The eyeopening series exposes stereotypes and stigmas plaguing the community; further proving we all have more work to do when it comes to bringing awareness to squash these century-old, derogatory ways of thinking. 

Instagram.com/WeTheUrban

it always makes me laugh when an artist/entertainer takes a stance on a political issue and there’s an immediate influx of people telling them to stick to their art form and stay away from politics like…y’all realize that the point of a democracy is everyone getting a say regardless of their background right? like the career path someone chooses doesn’t negate their right to political input 

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songs to make you feel like the first + last scenes in a movie-

the beginning-  installs a feeling of determination. the sun is shining, the kid is skateboarding through the city, people are getting ready for their big day, the story is starting to paint over your screen, motivating you to get outside right after this hour and a half and do something.

the end-  the sun is setting. our hero has found happiness within themselves, as they scream out of the sunroof in a car leading to nowhere and everywhere. everything is right, and everything is warm, comforting your doubts and leaving you with a sense of hope in your ordinary life.

Stayed up ‘til 4 in the morning working on this bad boy– a submission to the Women’s March on Washington call for art. I’d love for it to be chosen, knowing my artwork is there, standing strong for women’s rights when I wasn’t able to (I WILL be at the sister march in Austin though!) I’m also aware, though, that I went a little crazy with the illustrative part and it may not make for a great political poster… oh well! 

I posted this on instagram and some people lost their minds, so to clarify, this is about our president working with/for Putin to undermine the US, while at the same time insulting our allies.Trump is a compulsive liar and has done nothing to prove that he is someone who can be trusted (no tax returns, didn’t divest his business, etc) and his actions in the last two weeks undermine our country’s security, both physically and economically.

I have a breadth of criticism for the man, but I would implore any and all to do their own research on sites without bias (avoid Breitbart/Huffpo/etc, read NYT). 

It’s Thanksgiving which means tables decorated with tiny porcelain figures of Native Americans sharing corn with pilgrims. It’s a holiday about being grateful, coming together, and being at peace but while we use caricatures of a great people, mainstream media ignores their cries for help. While we set tables with servings of food that are far too large, the original inhabitants of this great nation struggle to fight for clean drinking water and respect for their ancestors.

I’m not great at words but this issue is very dear to my heart so here’s some art.

musicals as kids you knew in high school

Les Mis: dramatic foreign exchange kid who plays up their own country’s stereotypes to mess with the other students. Huge heart; cries at the end of literally every movie. In with the popular kids.

The Book of Mormon: the most politically incorrect kid you’ve ever met. Whenever they say anything, you wait a few moments and look around at the other students to make sure it’s okay to laugh. You sometimes lay awake thinking about things they’ve said because they’re right.

Newsies: that poor freshman who still hasn’t hit puberty yet. Has a friend group of other woefully prepubescent boys. Think Sam and Company in Freaks and Geeks. They sit in a corner of the lunchroom and hope the athletes won’t find them. Is very vocal about how much they hate the school and won’t shut up about transferring to some school in New Mexico. Ran for student government as a freshman and won, shocking everyone.

Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812: Transferred to your high school for only a year, but no one will ever forget them. Was responsible for planning the legendary senior prank that resulted in the principal running from the school screaming. Eventually got expelled. Some students blame it on racism drama that 1812 themselves actually had nothing to do with; most people understand that this rumor is false.

Waitress: the kid who decorates their binder covers with glittery letters and hums while they organize their locker. Spends free time volunteering: not for their resume, but out of the goodness of their heart. Punched the school bully once and nearly went viral. Is actually reasonably popular–partially because they’re friends with popular junior Sara B., but mostly because they’re such a great person.

Hamilton: the freshman kid who somehow manages honor roll academics, five extracurriculars, a part-time job, a small nonprofit, a mental illness, and a dog. Is legendary for sassy one-liners. Carries speakers everywhere and dances on tables in the cafeteria, getting everyone to sing along. Is somehow really, really popular; some of the other kids are salty.

Rent: the artistic/political kid. Senior who the other kids look up to. Openly responsible for the controversial political graffiti in the bathroom. Got suspended once for protesting the student dress code: the only thing the handbook actually says is that you must wear shoes at all times, so they just showed up to school naked. Is low-key Hamilton’s idol. Like Newsies, also won’t shut up about transferring to some school in New Mexico.

Wicked: the other artistic/political kid, though slightly more on the political side. The kid with all the pins on their messenger bag. Their Facebook is full of social justice rants and emotional videos shared from liberal media pages. Is probably going to become president.

Dear Evan Hansen: the kid who’s really quiet irl, but has ten thousand followers on Tumblr and is a minor online celebrity. On Facebook, posts inspirational quotes in pretty fonts with nature backgrounds and gets maybe two or three likes. Draws on arms with Sharpie during class. Is also somehow in with the popular kids, but chooses not to hang out with them. 

Little Shop of Horrors: the kid who is really sweet but whom you suspect is kinda internally unbalanced. Has a dark sense of humor; makes quiet jokes sometimes that no one else hears, but you do, and you’re terrified. Bonds with Dear Evan Hansen over plant obsession.

Heathers: other slightly unbalanced kid, though they’re more obvious about it. Is basically Ally Sheedy in The Breakfast Club. Sometimes wears rollerskates to school; listens to podcasts and wears headphones everywhere and only takes them off to fight bullies. Actually still uses an iPod. Not really in with the popular kids, but does have a gaggle of admirers among the younger students.

Be More Chill: the kid who works in the computer cluster. Is quite a jokester in general, so people don’t know whether or not to be worried by their self-deprecating jokes. Is in Yearbook and swaps out the class portraits of people they don’t like with the most unflattering pictures in the world. Almost sent that version to print once and had a panic attack in the bathroom. Is actually rather famous for said panic attack in the bathroom. Has an unexpected friendship with Heathers

Falsettos: the senior kid always making snarky but surprisingly philosophical comments at the back of the class. Insists that all everyday objects are metaphors. Always looks to be on the verge of a nervous breakdown. No one understands how everyone in their friend group knows each other. Tried to run for student government, but tragically lost to popular homecoming queen Dolly Midler.

Cultivate the practice of appreciation. Learn to give thanks to those who walked into your life, even those who chose not to stay. Because each moment lived, good or bad; each person you met, good or evil, was an essential part of your growth. It’s through your experiences with the darkness that make you appreciate the light.
—  Be grateful
I think an artist’s only responsibility is to chase their inspiration and to fall in love. If it happens to make the world a better place, so much the better, but if you’re trying to do that consciously, it feels like homework. We can smell when an artist is doing something out of obligation versus ‘Something in me demands that I write this'… It’s about falling in love and really writing what’s inside you. Sometimes that’s political and sometimes it’s, ‘I’m pissed off and I want to write about how I’m pissed off.’ An artist’s only responsibility is to be true and authentically yourself. …I think that’s our job. I think that’s what people recognize, that’s what people relate to: authenticity.
—  Lin-Manuel Miranda (x, x)
I was too busy trying to fit an antonym into a definition, that I forgot the true meaning of life
—  misunderstood