June 4, 2020

The Design Community Takes to Instagram to Voice Support for Inclusivity

Friends and allies of the black design community share art, notes of support, and work by black designers, acknowledging the need to urgently fight racial injustice and underrepresentation to create a more inclusive industry.

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Memorial cameo of George Floyd. #georgefloyd

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Talking about Race The #nationalmuseumofafricanamericanhistoryandculture AfricanAmerican History and Culture has become a center of trying to grapple with the problems of Race in American that plague our nation The lauded museum designed by Sir David Adjaye @davidadjaye has introduced” Talking About Race” According to the @washingtonpost Post is is a Web-based initiative that uses videos, role-playing exercises and question-based activities to explore the origins and definitions of race and identity. AS state by columnist Pegg Mcglone “Built on the museum’s long-standing educational work, the project was released Sunday to respond to the current crisis, according to Candra Flanagan, the Smithsonian museum’s director of teaching and learning. “There’s a moment of possibility and change, and this a resource for thinking in different ways, acting in different ways,” Flanagan said. “But it’s a process. It takes steps and practice and commitment to work.” Let us hope we are at the dawn of a new dialogue and basis for change @smithsonian @acunninghamcameron

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Black lives matter. As a company of four white women, we see you and hear you. We acknowledge your pain, frustration, and anger. We will be taking time off from posting our normal content to share the voices and experiences of the Black community. We will also be taking time to listen, learn, donate and discuss how we can contribute and what actions we can take as a business and individuals to be anti-racist and support people of color now and beyond this moment. We ask that everyone join us and keep us accountable. As a business, we have donated to @naacp, and as individuals we have donated to @emergency_release_fund, @blackvisionscollective, @blklivesmatter, @audrelordeproject, @thelovelandfoundation, @brooklynbailfund, @splcenter, @naacp, @mnfreedomfund, @phillybailout, and Homeless Black Trans Women Fund. In the coming days, we will be sharing additional resources we found helpful as well as Black designers for you to support. If you have resources or stories you would like us to share, please leave a comment here or send us a DM.

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With a commitment to listen, learn and participate.

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Stronger together ???? #blacklivesmatter Artwork by @mongequentin ?

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It’s amazing what you discover when you take the time to venture outside of your own bubble. The other day when voicing a private thought publicly – “why don’t I know more black designers?” – I just wanted to push myself and my friends to interrogate the representational failings of our industry.? ? What I neither expected nor deserved was that people like @badguild and @bettershared would fill the chasm of my ignorance with so many designers I now admire. Case in point are these lamps designed by @a.a.k.s which are made in Burkina Faso by refugee women artisans from Mali.? ? Those close to me know that I’ve spent the past year trying to figure out a way to connect Thai and American craft/design. In the work of @a.a.k.s I’ve now found a pure example of what I hope to someday achieve, a brand that connects people from across the world while also preserving heritage craft, never once sacrificing contemporary aesthetics.? ? People have been saying we should support more black owned businesses. Do that. But also realize this isn’t a token thing. I opened my eyes wider and ended up finding a role model. Seek out businesses that share your personal values. ? ? And finally, @a.a.k.s is a Ghana based enterprise. I just bought a lamp, it will be in NY relatively soon. This is the world we live in! Don’t listen to the protectionists among us who have been saying that COVID-19 spells the end of globalization. We are more connected now than ever. I look forward to the day when the conversation between emerging design hubs around the world in places like Accra and Mexico City and Seoul holds equal status amongst the centers of power that have held our imaginations captive for far too long. #supportblackownedbusinesses

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Let us hope that this time around, the moment is bigger than a hashtag. While we initially participated in Blackout Tuesday, it ended up muting essential voices and messages. So we felt it was more meaningful for us to continue to use this platform to amplify the voices of black activist artists. Since it’s founding, MAD has strived to reflect the social currents of the era, while working to provide a space for the underrepresented artist. Ebony Patterson’s Where We Found Them, which is featured in the MAD Collection, is just one of her pieces that depicts murder victims, as sourced through social media, embellished to seduce viewers into witnessing underreported brutality. Speaking about the work, Patterson said, “There is a challenge being made about seeing and looking. The seeing is what happens on social media, but the looking is what I’m asking you to do. The looking requires thought, it requires engagement, it requires awareness, it requires inquiry, and it requires presence.” What are you doing to remain aware, engaged, and present? Learn more about just a few of the social justice organizations leading the charge at this time (list below). And check out @buildingmovementproject’s “Mapping Our Roles in Social Change Ecosystems,” to help you determine what role you should take in helping to make active change. Black colleagues, artists, and supporters – Stay hydrated, get rest, and remember, Black Joy Matters Too. Black Lives Matter, and Black Art Matters. @audralordeproject @BlackVisionsCollective @CampaignZero @ColorofChange @ReclaimtheBlock ______ Ebony G. Patterson Where We Found Them, 2014. Cotton, plastic, lace, glitter, and mixed media.

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“Afrodizzia” one of my favorites by artist Chris Ofili who’s work I first saw in person at a small gallery who’s name I can not remember off Oxford street in London. He had won the Turner Prize the year before I started art school in London in 1999 and had been featured in the “Sensations” exhibit @royalacademyarts that was such a – well – sensation for the YBA artists . I have always loved his work especially the depth and layers in his paintings through mixing of materials including glitter and collage and the simplicity of his watercolor studies as well as his vibrant use of color. His more recent exhibition “Night and Day” at the @newmuseum was amazing and one of the best shows I have seen over the last 18 years in New York City. Employing a diverse range of aesthetic and cultural sources, including, among others, Zimbabwean cave paintings, blaxploitation films, Ovid’s Metamorphoses, and modernist painting, Ofili’s work investigates the intersection of desire, identity, and representation. I haven’t been posting my product the last week or so because it didn’t feel right when we are all consumed by the inexcusable murders by police, the protests, the pandemic, the economic depression, the unemployment, the social distancing and isolation of the past few months and worst of all the lack of leadership from our racist, divisive President. But my instinct is still to try and spread positivity because I know that because of what we are going through now justice will be won over injustice, hate will be dissolved by love, equality will rise above inequality, and peace will end violence. So I plan to post about people of all colors who I have found to be inspiring and who have used their work to spread a positive message of change. #chrisofili

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We want to take some time in the month of June to focus on advocates and activists who paved a path to fight against HIV/AIDS since the start of DIFFA’s creation. Today, we’re honored to talk about Katrina Haslip. She was an activist who pushed the CDC to broaden and expand it’s definition of AIDS that would help women tested and the disease diagnosed early, when treatment is more effective. Her work also encompassed starting AIDS Counseling and Education Program (ACE), and its sister program, ACE-OUT, which helped women with AIDS in and out of the prison system. Her work and activism played a key role in providing access to resources, testing, and treatment for women living with AIDS. #DIFFAnational #katrinahaslip #activism #activists #socialchange #changemakers #HIVAIDS #fightingAIDS #fightingHIV #fightingstigma #HIVawareness #AIDSawareness #healthcare #interiordesigncommunity

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PS 22

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We Cannot Tolerate Injustice . It is painfully obvious that America must deal with the clear injustices against the African American community. The problems of inequality in this country are complex and have deep roots. We all must be willing to put in the work to find solutions. . The tragic killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery are the latest in a long string of deaths that exemplify how black people are treated differently. The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) stands firmly against racial inequity, systemic racism, and violence and destruction of any kind. . We are not innocent bystanders. As an organization, we need to reflect on how to increase diversity within the profession, seek representation that better reflects the population, and stand against business practices that harm African Americans. We are committed to putting in the work to realize a future where environments do their part in peacefully bringing people together in difference and diversity. We must play a role in finding solutions. . . — ASID National Board of Directors

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