J usticeAid believes in justice and the power of art to bring us together in the fight for a more equitable nation and world. This year, in parallel with our fundraising for Black Voters Matter, each month we will highlight Black artists in order to uplift those whose voices have been muted, and whose visions can help us all see ourselves as we really are, and as we could be.
A Tribute to Harry Belafonte
J’Accuse #6 (1966) by Charles White (Apr. 2, 1918 – Oct. 3, 1979)
Harry Belafonte’s life and work were marked by his unwavering commitment to justice and equality as an entertainer and activist. He used his platform to raise awareness and advocate for the rights of marginalized communities, leaving behind a legacy that has inspired new generations of musician-activists.
One of the most lauded figurative painters working today, Kerry James Marshall challenges the absence of Black representation in Western art and yet refuses to pander to certain tropes of blackness: “I don’t do pictures in which the figures are abject in any way. I’m trying to create a certain kind of normalcy; a kind of everyday-ness.”
Read Apollo magazines’s interview with Marshall here.
Pictured here: School of Beauty, School of Culture, 2012, Kerry James Marshall, acrylic and glitter on unstretched canvas, 108 x 158 in., Birmingham Museum of Art.
What would happen if Muhammad Ali (then Cassius Clay), Malcolm X, Jim Brown, and Sam Cooke all spent one historic night together? One Night in Miami is a fictional account that takes place on the historic eve of Clay’s 1964 defeat of Sonny Liston when the four icons came together at a Miami hotel to discuss their roles in the Civil Rights Movement and cultural upheaval of the 60s.
PHOTO OF BELL HOOKS: Anthony Barboza/Getty Images
Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom
By bell hooks
Writer, teacher, and insurgent intellectual bell hooks writes about a new kind of education: Teaching students to “transgress” against racial, sexual, and class boundaries in order to achieve the gift of freedom is, for hooks, the teacher’s most important goal. More…