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ARTIST of the DAY: Hank Willis Thomas

2016 July 25
"I Am A Man" by Hank Willis Thomas

“I Am A Man” by Hank Willis Thomas

“This series of paintings was inspired by a 1968 photograph by Ernest Withers of marchers during the Memphis sanitation workers March.  Martin Luther King was assassinated while there in support of the March.  The men carried signs which read ‘I am a Man’.  I found it fascinating that the the phrase I grew up with was ‘I am THE Man’.  The collective statement became individualistic in the age of integration.  Reflecting on American history I wanted to riff and remix the text, ultimately ending with the revelation ‘I Am. Amen.’  MLK showed us that our greatest gift is our consciousness and it is up to us what we choose to do with it.” —Hank Willis Thomas


I implore you to listen.  Listen. Understand your privilege, whatever it may be.  Being defensive doesn’t serve you. Don’t just look at people; SEE them. Love people for their humanity — both strengths & flaws.  Respect the space each person needs to work and speak and react to community in which they live.  Recognize that people have the right to be who they are, regardless of, and even in spite of, your expectation of them.  I am inspired by the work of today’s AAAD Artist of the Day, Hank Willis ThomasYou can change the world. Start with you.


Explore your truth with AAAD Artist of Day, Hank Willis Thomas!


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