BHM: Using art as a tool in the Black community to bring awareness to social issues

Delmarva – It’s the first day of Black History Month, the month that celebrates the accomplishments and contributions of those in the Black community.

Happy Black History Month! Every weeknight this month, we’re spotlighting a different feature, and tonight we dive into art. Activists say art in the black community has been able to bring awareness to social issues and bring the community together. We spoke with local activist Amber Green, who tells 47ABC that art has been engraved in her. She emphasizes creative art programming at her nonprofit the Fenix Youth Project. This way you can empower young leaders.  Green says through music and other forms of entertainment the black community has made great strides for social change.

“Art is such a strong part of the black community and we’ve been using it as a tool for decades… to not only bring about awareness, to carry on stories, to bring our communities and our generations together, because it’s very important for us to keep having uncomfortable conversations,” Green says.

Amber a poet herself says her work speaks to her future self, future young Black girls, and pay homage to the Black women that came before her. Green says many African Americans took a risk with using their art to tell a story. Art is the main vessel to carrying uncomfortable conversations. People like Billie Holiday demonstrate using art to discuss traumatic topics. She used her song strange fruit to highlight lynching in the south when she herself was already free, living in the north. Green mentions Beyonce, Childish Gambino, Rihanna, and more as other artists who speak to Black History in their art forms. Another activist Gloria Richardson used more visual means.

“The pictures of Gloria Richardson – that is art that people are now using as cell phone background, posters in their homes – that someone is an artist someone captured her, using her art form and now told her story,” Green explains.

Art remains a tool that everyone has access to, be it visual, musical, or something else. Green encourages you to simply keep telling stories, no matter how you do it.

“Art is actually the stepping stone for a lot of black excellence,” Green concludes.



Categories: Black History Month, Local News, Maryland