WhiteNOISE artblog

Art, Social Action, Racism, White Privilege

Month: November, 2015

Tamir Rice Anniversary

Tamir Rice has been gone almost a year.

November 22nd is the one year anniversary of when Cleveland police officers gunned down 12-year-old Tamir Rice in a playground. The police who killed Tamir still haven’t been charged.

Tamir’s family is asking people to take action in Cleveland and across the country on the anniversary of his death. Now is time to show our outrage, and stand with the family’s demands.

This Wednesday, SURJ (Showing Up For Racial Justice) is hosting a conference call to share an update on the case how you can take action to get justice for Tamir.

Tamir’s death at the hands of police was senseless, unnecessary, and preventable. When police kill unarmed children, we expect them to be held accountable for their wrongdoing. We need to act to make sure these officers are prosecuted.

Register here for the phone conference:

http://myaccount.maestroconference.com/conference/register/64EMMPXGLMG8JIHD

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Portraits–a response

I propose to commemorate and reflect on lives recently lost to racially-motivated and institutional violence through the creation of portraits of those killed. Actual, digital static or a media-based interpretation of static interrupts and becomes the filter through which we see the individual. The static is our own insulation against the reality of such violence (especially if we are White) and the representation of the media’s coverage of such events that simultaneously brings those actions to light and takes advantage of the tragedy.

These two portraits–of Sandra Bland and Tamir Rice–are beginning thoughts on the project and are done using powdered graphite on paper applied with a Q-tip and erased.

Sandra Bland portrait

Sandra Bland portrait

Tamir Rice portrait

Tamir Rice portrait

White Noise/The Peacekeeper Collaboration notes…

“WhiteNoise/The Peacekeeper“ is a sculptural, digital media installation that explores institutional racism and the disturbing trend toward militarized policing in America. Viewers are presented with the opportunity to consider and confront race- based violence against African Americans in relationship to the benefits of White privilege.

Media coverage of events, from Ferguson to Charleston, bombard every news source across the nation. Yet many feel far removed from the reality of that violence. By staying quiet do we send the message that these occurrences are okay? What grounds do we, as White artists, have to make work commenting on this? As intergenerational, White, female collaborators we bring these questions to the work.

Kathleen Caprario-Ulrich created “White Noise”, a digital audio/visual media installation, and Marissa Solini created “The Peacekeeper”, a 50-plaster gun installation balancing on a 60″ wooden pedestal. Both works were created independently by the respective artists, but joined together in a partnership installation upon realizing the common perspective and issues that both Kathleen and Marissa were addressing in their works. It is their hope that by uniting forces, they can send a stronger message about racial injustice and White privilege in today’s society. The fifty white plaster replicas (molded from a toy gun) are stacked as a cairn. The namesake toy is designed for children and available at many major department stores. America claims itself as a melting pot, yet the recent acts of violence towards the black community have only further divided the races, which begs the question—who is keeping the peace?

The abstracted static, the White Noise, that is digitally projected at The Peacekeeper’s base, has a metaphoric duality. The accompanying, looped audio, comprised of extended static buzz and scripted dialog, invites the viewer to consider their response to the complexity and cultural dynamics of race in America. Does one speak up and out against racially motivated violence or remain silent and insulated from the reality of institutional racism? We all have a choice—WNTP asks, what’s yours?

Marissa Solini is a recent university art graduate and Kathleen Caprario-Ulrich is Marissa’s former art instructor.

WNTP

WNTP

WNTP_Detail

WNTP_Detail

WNTP Sketch

WNTP Sketch

White Noise PSA

White Noise explores institutional racism and the disturbing trend toward militarized policing in America from a White point of view. Viewers are presented with the opportunity to consider and confront race-based violence against African Americans in relationship to the benefits of White privilege.

Media coverage of events, from Ferguson to Charleston, bombard every news source across the nation. Yet many feel far removed from the reality of that violence. By staying quiet do we send the message that these occurrences are okay? What grounds do we, as White artists and consumers, have to make work commenting on this? As a White, female, I bring these questions to the work.

The abstracted static, the white noise, that is positioned at the beginning and the end, has a metaphoric duality. The scripted dialog invites the viewer to consider their response to the complexity and cultural dynamics of race in America and all White-dominant societies. Does one speak up and out against racially motivated violence or remain silent and insulated from the reality of institutional racism? We all have a choice—WN asks, what’s yours?

Written after the shooting of Walter Scott on April 4, 2015, it is a response to that violence as well as the lack of response from my mostly White, liberal Facebook friends. The silence I received was deafening, and instead of engaging a discussion on race and institutional racism, images of arugula salads and sunsets were the response given to my outrage. What to do? Write a script, find a crew, talent, shoot, edit and get it out–make some noise–White Noise!

https://www.facebook.com/pages/White-Noise-PSA/992019460838316