The epidemics of racial and social injustice have been at the forefront of many Americans as of late. From Trayvon Martin to Sandra Bland to Philando Castile, the unwarranted deaths of black men and women in this democratic nation has inspired and pushed many to address the frustrating and often debated topic-turned-hashtag #BlackLivesMatter. Many have taken action by simply taking part in peaceful protests. Others like artist Steff Reed have decided to take on a more artistic route.
The New York City educator and activist noticed the increased urgency to bring awareness to the issue of police brutality and anti-blackness in America. He then tapped Dionne Victoria, a visual artist, community leader, entrepreneur, and teacher from Chicago, to assist in co-curating The Frontline Exhibition, a night event that brings creators and thinkers together in one room to start a conversation that yield to concrete strategies.
After two successful installments in New York City, the third annual event heads to the gun violence plagued city of Chicago at the South Side Community Art Center (3831 South Michigan Avenue) on Saturday night (July 16).
“Bringing Frontline to Chicago has been one of my key missions since its inception. The city has seen a high level of police brutality and gang violence within the recent months and now more than ever is the time to take a stand.”
“While we examine what police and society does to us, let’s also take a moment look at the violence we bring upon each other. We should be just as upset and moved to fight for change at gang violence as we are at police brutality because they both stem from the same place.”
The free and open to the public event features a panel discussion and live performances. Attendees are also able to meet and purchase artwork from the showcased artists and network, while holding conversations to advocate social change. Frontline Exhibition includes a six-week video series addressing police brutality, mass incarceration and more issues in America, airing exclusively on YouTube.
Frontline Exhibition Chicago goes down tonight (July 16) from 7pm-10pm. For more information, visit iamsteffreed.com/frontlineexhibition.