Brooklyn’s own Joan Ruth Bader Ginsburg (March 15, 1933 – September 18, 2020) was an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1993 until her death on September 18, 2020. Her passing this year spawned many a tribute on the street, including this doorway – something she opened for countless people during her career.
New York street artist Jilly Ballistic has been borrowing black and white photos from an earlier era of economic depression to paste on the streets for half a dozen years or so. The effect is nostalgic and sometimes puzzling, as they are often evocative of WWII era air raids and nuclear attacks.
In a year where the world population has become frightened of airborne contagion and the very topic of protective face masks has taken on politically charged emotions, Jilly’s modest dressmakers and librarians engulfed with rubber/glass masks and elephantine hoses are our chums. We now imagine a sort of kinship with these people from another time – a reassuring familiarity across the decades.
In the midst of country-wide demonstrations for racial equity and against historic and systemic police brutality, especially as it pertains to black and brown people, a massive move to the streets New York by street artists was undeniable..
“The shot of the worker sitting taking a moment’s rest with the Colin Kaepernick poster behind him – I had taken my first round of shots around SOHO and began taking photos of the many boarded up store fronts that had “prepared” for anticipated violence and looting during the Black Lives Matter (BLM) marches.
John Robert Lewis was an American statesman and civil rights leader who served in the United States House of Representatives for more than thirty years. When he died in July many tributes arose from the streets to honor him and his life of service to justice and equality.
Who would have guessed the prophetic quality of this mural we discovered in Berlin in February when we were preparing our upcoming exhibition at Urban Nation. We were perplexed at the time and wondered what it augured for the new year.
“Go out, breathe, listen and trust your gut in 2020.”