Supporting #BlackLivesMatter through art

Artwork by Sacrée Frangine (@sacree_frangine)

All in a few months, Australia has seen bushfires, and the global events of the COVID-19 pandemic (and subsequent lockdown), and now the Black Lives Matter protests.

And while many people may try to argue the Black Lives Matter problem isn't an Australian problem, Australia does have a massive Aboriginal incarceration rate (up around 30 percent) and a racism problem. And unlike the bushfires or pandemic problems, the #BlackLivesMatter movement is an issue we can (and should) all support, both locally and internationally. We will feature local Indigenous/Aboriginal artists separately in a future story, also focusing on the racism issue here in Australia.

Here we've gathered a list of artists (or archives dedicated to preserving the work of those) who identify as Black or people of colour (POC) in varying mediums, all determined activists in their mediums pushing for their voices to be heard. To directly support these artists and more, please buy directly from the artists and avoid corporate produced art. When sharing their work via word of mouth or online, remember to credit and link their work to social media/website where possible. Below there are collectives, magazines and further anti-racism resources in a document compiled by Sarah Sophie Flicker and Alyssa Klein.

This is only a short list of talented artists all worth checking out, but please take this as a starting point to also research further on activists, collectives, artists, authors and creators of all fields to support.

Artists (painters/sculptors/filmmakers/writers)

Black Zines to check out

  1. MoreColorMedia - digital + print zine shifting the paradigm on who gets to tell their story. Run by queer and bipoc. Editor @fromaissata.

  2. AfroStyleMagz - African MultiCultural/Racial Fashion magazine exploring diverse complexities and unique styles of the diaspora.

  3. Preme.Magazine - a Independent Black Owned magazine available in print and digital formats with purely creative editorial content.

  4. HannahMagazine - An Ode to Black Women created by Qimmah Saafir.

  5. CrwnMag - telling the world the truth about Black women by showcasing a new standard of beauty and documenting their story in tangible, print form.

  6. Galdem Zine - online and print publication committed to sharing perspectives from women and non binary people of colour.

Resources to find out more

Amplify their voices and remember that we must keep continuing to long after they slow down the news reports on the #BlackLivesMatter movement. Only with a steady (however slow) progression of understanding and active practices, can we overcome the war on racism and create this much-needed change.