Uplifting Blackness 2022
My oil painting "I see 1" is a physical representation that Black people, specifically Black men, are non-monolithic. In this piece, I have created four different personas (the average Black man, the thug, the assimilator, and a character representing Trayvon Martin). Although I have created these four very different Black men, the idea is to show that in the eyes of a white society all these men look exactly the same. The idea of these men and how they connect is like a convoluted circle. The assimilator tries to remove himself from blackness and aligns himself with whiteness, making white people think that he is what Blackness is, only furthering them from really understanding who the other men in the piece are. The average Black man and the thug are interchangeable; in the eyes of the law, the average Black man looks like the thug and the thug looks like a monster. The hooded boy was every single one of these men at one point in their younger years. To me, my piece has many different meanings because I also see it as the same Black man molded by the different decisions that could be made in his life.
About the Artist:
Sariyah Hines is a third-year English major at King's who specializes in activism through poetry. She is published in Western's spring 2022 edition of the Symposium and she often blends her love of painting with her love of poetry.