20th Anniversary Art Sale Benefit: Special Edition by Artist Awol Erizku
In celebration of Critical Resistance’s 20th Anniversary, Artist Awol Erizku has donated a special edition photograph to support the mission to eliminate the prison industrial complex (PIC) and fulfill the unfinished work and vision of Black liberation. The photograph, an edition of fifteen, is available for sale through the end of December 2018.
Email Donors@CriticalResistance.org with any questions. We greatly appreciate your support for this benefit and this artist.
The still life in Erizku’s photograph evolved from the artist’s first film, Serendipity (2015), where Erizku symbolically destroyed Michelangelo’s David and replaced it with a bust depicting the Egyptian queen Nefertiti. The work explores how art institutions claim and represent cultural space through a western specific lens. This still life composition includes a white bust of Nefertiti with everyday objects set against a white background that serve as tropes for Black invisibility and whitewashing in art history and art historical discourse.
Themes in Erizku’s work related to Black invisibility and shifting common sense toward Black liberation resonate heavily with issues at the core of Critical Resistance (CR). There are currently more than 2 million people— the majority poor people of color— disappeared and invisibilized by imprisonment in the United States, millions more under the carceral control of parole and probation, and thousands of communities targeted by policing, including ICE. Erizku is inspired to support CR’s work against the PIC because of their visionary efforts and strategies to end this systemic violence. “We know the problems; it’s time to lead with solutions.”
Since 1998, CR has reinvigorated the movement to dismantle the systems of prisons, policing, and surveillance, which heavily target Black life and other people of color in the United States and internationally. To this end, we have defeated jail expansion, halted racial profiling policing policies, and advanced the struggle against imprisonment and police militarization, in favor of health and self-determination.
As a testament to the challenges and victories of the past 20 years, we has experienced an upsurge in support for the abolitionist movement as a new generation is inspired to challenge the dangers of the PIC. CR welcomes this surge of interest and invites others to join the cause. Erizku’s support, along with that of Lineberger, Marple, and Wang, is demonstrative of CR’s expanding audience, as more and more people become aware of the harm done to communities impacted by the PIC–communities and commit to supporting visionary organizations that are taking these issues head on.
We deeply appreciate your support and donations! Thank you to Awol, the artists, and patrons. For more information about this sale or if you have questions or ideas about doing a similar donation effort, please email Donors@criticalresistance.org.