“If not us, then who? If not now, then when?”- John Lewis
These words have been resonating a lot with me lately. These words are the call to action that I feel we all need. In my work I make monuments to social transgressions. Those actions that go against the grain and change our way of life for the better. The sort of long range thinking and actions that consider our current state while holding in the highest regard our collective futures. I’ve always loved the patina of history when talking about tough subjects. However, instead of looking to the past at this moment, our collective actions can change our nation’s course for the betterment of us all. We have an opportunity now to affect real systematic social change. With this piece I tried to celebrate the forbearers of systematic change. People who fought and struggled for the betterment of us all. This print is a love letter to political protest. With this piece I want to remind that we are those people, that the time is now!
It’s not enough to just be angry for the injustices that have happened to Elijah McClain, Terrence Crawford, Breonna Taylor, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Trayvon Martin, George Floyd and far far far too many more to name here. We have the power to affect real systematic change. Power to the people!
Terence Hammonds (b.1976 US) lives and works in Cincinnati, Ohio. Printmaker, Terence Hammonds received a BFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston in conjunction with Tufts University. His work is informed and inspired by the struggles and determination of African-Americans seeking equality during the civil rights movement of the 60s and fuses imagery from that era with soul, funk, rap and punk music. Hammonds appropriates imagery from various movements and civil rights history and combines them with decorative motifs and patterns that adorn, memorialize and abstract histories of racial identity in America.