Category Archives: Community

Whites have become black?!

I came across this video and just want to share. Nabil Abdul Rashid says what I and many others have been thinking and saying. The use of basic critical thinking skills and intelligent thoughts shown in this video to refute the opinion of a popular historian are just incredible. He discusses the prejudice that society has against black culture. Society sees certain negative acts as being specific to the entire black population and disregards those same acts as being universal regardless of the color of someones skin. 

This particular historian, David Starkey, in 2011 during the England riots claims ‘whites have become black” because they are acting out violently. He blames Jamaican immigrants for “intruding” on English culture and hip-hop for promoting rioting. Of course no one in their right mind would belive that before the riots white people across the globe were never violent until black people started to influence them. Violence is a human behavior regardless of color of skin. I wont say that there isn’t behavior specific to different cultures and there are certain meaningless acts we attribute to certain cultures based on race. Black people have rhythm, they can dance and always talking back to the movie screen. White people wear flip flops in freezing cold weather and always run towards danger to “investigate” (which I find to be so true but hey its just an opinion). Regardless of how true these statements may be at the end of the day we are all human with the same genes and same potential to display the same behaviors. Race is always thrown out first as a reason for someones action instead of looking at class and privilege. Ignoring social and economic factors in terms of behavior is deceiving.

Simply put-Read books. Know your own history, tell your story before someone else tries to. Challenge and question.

Please enjoy and feel free to share your opinion.


Art Basel Miami Beach 2011

What a weekend I’ve had!!! So I spent the last two weekends enjoying the cool breeze and palm trees in Miami. I decided late Friday night that I would try my best to catch the first flight to check out Art Basel Miami Beach. Set back #1. The alarm was set but I didn’t hear it. So I jumped out of bed got ready, grabbed a few things and rushed to the airport. I checked in online, cleared security and boarded the plane just in time for take off. YES!!! I was on my way. My mother was anxious to attend the festivities with me so I just knew she would be at the airport waiting. Set back #2. FLAT TIRE! At that point I had no idea how long it would be until I met with my crew to hit the streets. Soooo what does a girl like me do? Find the nearest spot to get my toes beach ready. 😉 As soon as I’m finished I walk out of the airport my crew is there waiting for me. So I call out to the the Universe. “No more set backs. I only have 32 hours to get it in!”

Off to Native Films to shoot Merid Tafesse, a Contemporary Fine Artist visiting from Ethiopia. Tafesse was creating a huge masterpiece in the Wynwood Art Disctrict. Jimmy Malcolm accompanied him with soulful sounds on the piano. Mixed media on canvas and live music in the same space. I felt like I was watching the ultimate duet. Two major forms of art being created simultaneously in front of my eyes.

It was getting late I was hungry so I walked around the corned to a small Jamaican restaurant a new friend suggested. Of course the person who made the suggestion isn’t Jamaican nor would he understand why I never eat Jamaican food out but I thought I would give it a try. The rice and peas lacked some essential flavor but wasn’t too bad but, the brown stew and red velvet cake won me over. Nourishing dinner and a pleasant surprise. I love sweets.

I was exhausted but had to push through to check out more of the festivities. Since the Rubell Family Collection was near I tried to catch that and managed to see Art Africa, Moksha Art Fair and a few other places Saturday night. The next morning I was up early to prepare for the 2nd Annual Art Basel Panel Discussion on Contemporary African Diaspora Fine Art, which was held at the University of Miami, College of Arts and Science. The panel featured Tafesse, Howard Mills, Valerie Cooper, Dr. Meghoo, Armando Marino and Ludlow Bailey. The audience engaged the panel after initial presentations with some heated comments and questions pertaining to the advancement of African Diaspora Fine Art in America. Tafesse and Marino gave great insight on artist success over seas as well. The panel discussion was very informative and I look forward to the next one. I had a light lunch then went to the main event at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

WOW. At first I had no words. I saw the sea of people and thought I’d be so overwhelmed but I wasn’t. I couldn’t believe the collections. My time was limited so I saw a small portion of the galleries represented at the main event. Jack Shainman and Alexander Gray Associates were most memorable. Aside from the piece Tafesse completed the night before I must admit I fell in love with the Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare. I have no words to explain his genius. You just have to check it out for yourself. With just a few hours before my flight home I stopped by the Kehinde Wiley fish fry at the Shore Club. His work is simply amazing! I had a wonderful night. What a fabulous way to end a 32 hour trip. And I made it to the airport just in time to board the plane once again.

I can’t wait to attend Art Basel next year!

Feature Image: Artwork by Kehinde Wiley

Top Right Image: Artwork by Merid Tafesse

Bottom Right Image: Artwork by Yinka Shonibare

Happy Christopher ComeBusUs Day!

This morning I would have been up at 5:30 am to get ready to go to school.  Instead I slept in, had a great breakfast and completed a few chores.  It is nice to have a long weekend from time to time but this holiday doesn’t mean much more to me. In fact, the principle behind this holiday is disheartening.  Each year on the second Monday of October, Christopher Columbus and his invasion in the West is celebrated as a federal holiday.  Some school districts, federal institutions and banks are closed for Columbus Day.  Though memorialized for the first time in 1972 in New York City, Columbus day became a federal holiday under President Roosevelt.  We really need to rethink this day and which honors the tragic and brutal annihilation of the indigenous people who were “so called” discovered.

Below is a link for the Native America Rights Fund. This is a non profit that provides assistance for tribes, individuals and organizations. They also post information about events and ways to donate.

Black Girls Run Atlanta!

Last night my sister came over and told us about a group she has been running with called Black Girls Run.  She demanded that we wake up early to meet her at the starting point by 7 a.m.  I like to sleep in on the weekends but not this morning.  My mother woke up around 5:45 a.m. and I was up just a few minutes after.  (She is visiting for a few weeks. YEAY!)  We got our sweats on and grabbed some fruit.  Then jumped in the car and met the other ladies in the running group.  The air was brisk, the roads were clear and we were in a half sleep state awaiting our 3 mile run.  Which at 7 in the morning seems like 300 miles.  Especially since none of us had worked out in a while.  Upon arrival we noticed my sister followed by about 50 other cars that filled the parking lot.  Then it was time to run.  Just before receiving our route I counted approximately 75 (black girls).  It was so amazing to see so many beautiful women of all ages gathered to run this Saturday morning.  We hit the pavement together then branched off to our 3, 5 and 7 miles journeys to fitness.  Within one hour all of us had completed our respective runs.  I completed 3 miles.  As we gathered to cheer each other on at the finish line a huge 18 wheeler passed by, blowing his loud Mack truck horn and threw up the peace sign…  a sign of respect to the sweaty sistahs.  What a great way to start the day! To find out more information about Black Girls Run check out their blog at

If you are in the Atlanta area check out the Facebook page

Here’s to your health!

Occupy The Nation

Occupy Wall Street was formed to draw attention to the role powerful financial interests played in wreaking havoc on America’s economy. “The participation of every person, and every organization, that has an interest in returning the US back into the hands of its individual citizens is required.”

Occupy Wall Street is a “leaderless resistance movement” orchestrated through Twitter, Facebook and other social media tools. The Twitter hashtags #OccupyWallStreet and #TakeWallStreet lit up with coordination messages and solidarity tweets.


Look at the links below and join your city’s occupation movement and take back your freedom!  And remember to keep it peaceful.  Viva la rEVOLution!



@OccupyWallSt (New York, NY)           LIVESTREAM

@OccupyWallStNYC (New York, NY)     LIVESTREAM

@OccupyInfo (New York, NY)               LIVESTREAM

@Occupy_Boston (Boston, MA)           LIVESTREAM

@OccupyBaltimore (Baltimore, MD)

@Occupybuffalo (Buffalo, NY)            

@OccupyVermont (Vermont)

@OccupyBGM  (Binghamton, NY)

@OccupyUtica (Utica, NY)

@OccupyIthaca (Ithaca, NY)

@occupyhrva (Hampton Roads, VA)

@OccupyPhilly (Philadelphia, PA)

@OccupyRichmond (Richmond, VA)

@OccupyKSt  (Washington, DC)

@OccupyNewark  (Newark, NJ)

@OccupyProv (Providence, RI)

@occupypitt (Pittsburgh, PA)


@OccupyMaine (Portland, ME)

@OccupyNewHaven (New Haven, CT)

@OccupyHartford (Hartford, CT)


@OccupyChicago (Chicago, IL)             LIVESTREAM

@OccupyMadison  (Madison, WI) 

@OccupyCincy  (Cincinnati, OH) 

@OccupyMilwaukee (Milwaukee, WI)

@occupygreenbay (Green Bay, WI)

@OccupyMemorial  (Kansas City, MO)  LIVESTREAM

@OccupyKC (Kansas City, MO)             LIVESTREAM

@occupywichita  (Wichita, KS)

@OccupyMN (Minnesota)

@OccupyMpls (Minneapolis, MN)

@OccupyCleveland (Cleveland, OH)

@OccupySTL (St. Louis, MO)

@OccupyAppleton (Appleton, WI)

@OccupyCOMO (Columbus, MO)

@OccupyIndy (Indianapolis, IN)

 @OccupyFortWayne  (Fort Wayne, IN)  

@OccupyOsu  (Oklahoma State University)

@OccupyYoungstow (Youngstown, OH)

@OccupyTulsa (Tulsa, OK)

@OccupyToledo (Toledo, OH)

@OccupyIowa  (Des Moines, IA)

@OccupyDetroit21 (Detroit, MI)

@OccupyStJoseph (St. Joseph,MO)


@OccupyLexKy  (Lexington, KY)

@OccupyLou (Louisville, KY)

@OccupyBham (Birmingham, AL)

@OccupyNOLA (New Orleans, LA)        LIVESTREAM

@OccupyCharlotte (Charlotte, NC)

@OccupyRaleigh (Raleigh, NC)

@OccupyHouston (Houston, TX)          LIVESTREAM

@occupyarkansas (Arkansas)

@OWSAtlanta (Atlanta, GA)

@Occupy_N_GA_now (Northern Georgia)

@occupycolumbus (Columbus, GA)

@OccupySavannah (Savannah SC)

@OccupyAustin (Austin, TX)                LIVESTREAM

@OccupyFlorida (Florida) 

@OccupyTampa (Tampa, FL)

@OccupyNashville (Nashville, TN)

@OccupyMiami (Miami, FL)

@OccupyJax (Jacksonville, FL)

@OccupyOrlandoFL (Orlando, FL)

@OccupyTallie (Tallahasee, FL)

@OccupyPensacola (Pensacola, FL)

@OccupySarasota (Sarasota, FL)

@OccupyGvilleFL (Gainesville, FL)

@OccupyPSL (Port St. Lucie, FL)

@OccupyAVL (Asheville, NC)

@OccupyNCGBORO (Greensboro, NC)

@OccupySanAnto  (San Antonio, TX)

@occupyelpaso (El Paso, TX)

@OccupyClarksvil (Clarksville, TN)

@OccupyCHA  (Chattanooga, TN)

@OccupyKnoxville (Knoxville, TN)

@OccupyJackson (Jackson, MS)

@OccupyColumbia (Columbia, SC) 

@OccupyFlorence (Florence, SC)

@OccupyHsv (Huntsville, AL)


@OccupySacto (Sacramento, CA)

@OccupyDenver  (Denver, CO)

@Occupy_SEATTLE (Seattle, WA) 

@OccupyWA  (Olympia, WA)

@OccupyTacoma  (Tacoma WA)

@OccupySanJose (San Jose, CA)

@OccupySantaCruz (Santa Cruz, CA)

@Occupyportland (Portland, OR)           LIVESTREAM

@occupyeugene (Eugene, OR)

@OccupySF (San Francisco, CA)            LIVESTREAM

@OccupyLA (Los Angeles, CA)              LIVESTREAM

@OccupyLasVegas (Las Vegas, NV)       LIVESTREAM

@OccupyReno (Reno, NV) 

@occupyphoenix (Phoenix, AZ)

@OccupyTucson (Tuscon, AZ)

@OccupyCSU (California State University)

@occupy_slc  (Salt Lake City)

@OccupyBurque (Albuquerque, NM)

@OccupySantaFe (Santa Fe, NM)

@OccupyRiverside (Riverside, CA)

@OccupySR (Santa Rosa, CA)

@OccupySpokane (Spokane, WA)

@OccupyHawaii (Hawaii)


@OccupyToronto (Toronto, ON)

@OccupyVancouver (Vancouver, BC)

@OccupyOttawa (Ottawa, ON)

@OccupyWinnipeg (Winnipeg, MB)

@OccupyVictoria (Victoria, BC)

@OccupyNB (New Brunswick)

@OccupyNS (Halifax, NS)

@OccupyHalifax (Halifax, NS)

@OccupyMontreal (Montreal, QB)

@OccupyYEG (Edmonton, AB)

@OccupyPEI  (Prince Edward Island)


@OccupyMCR  (Manchester)

@OccupyGlasgow (Glasgow)

@OccupyEdinburgh (Edinburgh)

@OccupyStAndrews (St. Andrews)

@OccupyLondon (London)

@OccupyBelfast (Belfast)

@OccupyNorwich (Norwich)


@occupySYDNEY (Sydney)

@OccupyPerth (Perth)

@OccupyBrisbane (Brisbane) 

@OccupyMELBOURNE (Melbourne)

@OccupyAdelaide (Adelaide)


@occupyadam (Amsterdam, Netherlands)

@OccupyDenHaag (The Hague, Netherlands)

@OccupyRotterdam (Rotterdam, Netherlands)

@OccupyParis (Paris, France)

@OccupySwiss (Zurich, Switzerland)

@OccupyDublin (Dublin, Ireland)

@OccupyLjubljana   (Ljubljana, Slovenia)  LIVESTREAM

@occupybrussels (Brussels, Belgium)

@OccupyFrankfurt (Frankfurt, Germany)


@OccupyTokyo (Tokyo)


@OccupyTijuana (Tijuana, Mexico)

 @OccupyBrazil (Brasilia, Brazil)

@OccupyArgentina (Buenos Aires, Argentina




MLK Memorial postponed… until September or October.

As I got ready to go to sleep I think about how my weekend could have turned out.  Then I had a moment where I gave thanks for the little and big things that make me smile.  I am so glad to have life and health.

Yesterday the official dedication ceremony for the King memorial was scheduled to occur.  However, the potential damage and flights that could have been effected by hurricane Irene were reason enough to postpone the events.  On Sunday morning, I would have stopped my alarm clock around 6 a.m. to get ready to go to the mall in Washington, D.C.   My father and I planned to attend the ceremony together.  We would have arrived there no later that 8 am and I would have had my parasol, hand fan and camera. READY!  I just knew I was going to make it and witness an awesome service.  On Friday,  I was notified that my flights were cancelled.  I was a bit disappointed but decided I would change my departure and arrivals.  Then my aunt who lives in Washington, D.C. sent a text stating that the service was cancelled.  But I didn’t believe it because I was too excited to go.  So I prepared myself to start packing.  Shortly after, my father called about the weather alerts and his concerns about me traveling.  I started to look up articles and as soon as I saw “postponed” my heart dropped.  I was devastated. Only because I worked myself up for months about going to D.C. to witness the dedication.  This project had been in the works for the last 15 years I was told and it was ready for the world to see.  President Barack Obama and Aretha Franklin were going to be there.  How could the official dedication be postponed? I took a moment to digest the new information.

I got over the disappointment and am happy I stayed away from the north.  Had I gone I probably would have been stuck there for a few days or had a miserable time with the power outages and fast winds.  I know that this happened the way it was supposed to and now that the monument is open to the public I can go visit whenever I choose.  I can’t wait to make that trip.

Martin Luther King Jr., monument in Washington D.C.

Nonviolence is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time: the need for man to overcome oppression and violence without resorting to oppression and violence.  Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation.  The foundation of such a method is love. – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 1964 (Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech)

Yesterday the memorial for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was opened to the public on the mall in Washington, D.C.

WOW!!! I can’t believe it!  I knew for some months that the event would come but it is finally here.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to attend today but I will be there Sunday along with the anticipated 300,000 people.  I’m just so excited!! Dr. King is the only African American and non president to be honored in this way.  Furthermore, there is no more space on the mall for any other monuments of this stature to my knowledge.  I will give you all an update when I return.  There will be musical tributes before and after along with a speech from President Barack Obama.  If you are in the area and can attend here is a link with some pertinent information and FAQ’s regarding the dedication service which will be held on Sunday, August 28th.

Blessings to the World

Rebel Artistry is sending condolences and blessings to the family and friends of the victims of the Norway shooting and bombing. Please take some time out of your day to say a prayer or speak positive words of peace for the lives lost.

We are also sending prayers and support for the crisis in the horn of Africa. This famine currently affects 4.5 million people in Ethiopia, 3.6 million people in Kenya, 80,000 in Djibouti, and almost 3 million in Somalia. Somalia is suffering its worst drought in 50 years. Running from conflict, and sick with hunger and thirst, people are fleeing to the borders or the aid camps in Kenya, and many children are dying on the way or too weak to survive once they get there. Please do not turn a blind eye just because it does not directly affect your life.

UNICEF is asking for $31.8 million for relief efforts. This money will help give treatment for women and children with severe malnutrition, access to clean drinking water and vaccinations to prevent deadly diseases like measles and polio.  To help UNICEF’s efforts, text “FOOD” to 864233 to donate $10 from the United States or visit the website.

Governments and the international community must address the issues that make people vulnerable in the first place. The food crisis in East Africa, like in many other parts of the world, is the result of recurring long-term problems.Sign a petition asking congress fight poverty and not to cut programs that fight the root causes of world hunger and keep families healthy for the long-term.   ONE Petition

 While there are still tragedies that occur miracles happen every day. “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Accepting that life is hard comes with accepting that you have the responsibility to make it better. Along side words of hope and encouragement your positive actions are needed to change the world.

Southern Fried Poetry Slam 2011

If you were in Atlanta and did not attend the 19th Annual Southern Fried Poetry Slam or The 15 Project you missed two monumental events.
Southern Fried was held June 8-11.  It is the 2nd largest poetry competition in the nation.  As community liaison I had the pleasure of inviting members of local organizations to participate and observe the festivities.  Many of the first timers had no idea that Southern Fried was such a huge event and wish it was held in Atlanta each year.  Fortunately, this poetry slam is designed to travel from city to city each year so poets and lovers of the art can partake in the festivities all over the country.  I enjoyed observing each of the bouts at the four different locations in the Castleberry Hill area.  The level of talent and diversity was just incredible.  Jam packed days with events such as yoga, children’s workshops, community service, cook out etc made this experience very memorable for the attendees. For some, the Will Bell Tribute made the poetry slam official.  150 poets and 30 teams came from all over to compete for the bragging rights and $7,500.  The team winner was Atlanta’s own JavaMonkey. Check out the official page for updates for the 2012 Southern Fried Poetry Slam.

My Top 3  Highlights
1. Sacred Sounds  from Tampa, Fl
2. BackTalk from Tallahassee, Fl
3. Singing a Boys II Men song with random participants and volunteers while driving down Fair St in the golf cart .

Many thanks to Paul D, Shadow, Keith Rogers, Bethsheba and all who worked so hard to make this event happen.

Group piece from some of the members of BackTalk