I’m in tears right now.
My name is Jamilla Okubo. I am an Kenyan-American artist from Washington, D.C. Currently residing in New York City attending Parsons the New School for Design. I am currently a rising senior at Parsons studying Integrated Fashion Design (undergraduate), with a background in Fine Arts, and a focus on textiles and fashion design.
I have been attending Parsons for three years now and I am getting ready to graduate this year as well as complete my senior thesis. I am currently $72,000 in debt to Parsons the New School for Design. For the past three years my mother has assisted me by paying the remainder of my tuition with the Parent Plus Loan. My mother has borrowed $43,000 of the Direct Parent Plus loan. I still owe $12,000 for my last (senior) year at Parsons and mother and I can no longer take out Direct Plus Loans.
I hope to be that minority student of color at Parsons, who represents the school, and inspires my younger siblings, and other minority/low-income students globally, to have the ambition and drive that I have, and not let financial issues get in the way of it.
I need $10, 787 to pay for the rest of my tuition for my last year at Parsons.
USAGE OF FUNDS:
-School Supplies (Fabric, muslin, pattern paper, designing tools, paint, canvases, lab fees, books, fieldtrip fees)
ABOUT ME & MY PURPOSE AS AN ARTIST:
As a multidisciplinary artist I am able to combine my skills and knowledge to create and express myself. My artwork mainly focuses on people of the Diaspora (people of color), whom I consider my community. I use my artistic disciplines as tools to challenge myself in ways to give back to my community, educate, and empower them as well as the rest of the world.
It is my duty to remind people of color that we have such a rich culture, and that we should love ourselves and one another. I create artwork for my community, because I believe that my purpose as an artist of color is to empower and educate my community.
My artistic discipline connects me to my community by allowing me to create artwork that my community is able to enjoy, embrace, and share with others. I not only create my artwork for myself, but what I express through the medium that I use, is a story that many in my community can relate to. When it comes to creating, I strongly believe in the fact that,
“Black art controls the “Negro’s” reality, negates negative influences, and creates positive images,”
A quote by Sonia Sanchez. As an artist of color coming from a low-income, single-mother household background, I am able to speak for many in my community from both my experiences growing up as well as express the beauty and hardships of my community’s culture and history. Being able to paint allows me to create for myself but also allows my work to connect to so many from my community. That is the beauty of being an artist, being able to express shared feelings and experiences with your community, where they can also can all take something from what you create.
There is so much to learn, and from that form of inspiration and influence, I create.
Portfolio Website: www.jamillaokubo.com
Shop my art prints here: http://aadatart.com/product-category/art-prints/jamilla-okubo/
SPREAD THE WORD TUMBLR FAMILY! I LOVE YALL!
*SIGNAL BOOST THIS PLEASEEEEE*
This happens in 2014
O’Ryan’s take: “Im sure this letter is filled with reasoned, thoughtful opinions about race in the US and what role the media plays.”
Also, should point out that this letter is typewritten.
This bleeds accuracy.
“More girls should join boys’ teams so it could be a tradition and it wouldn’t be so special.” - 13-year-old Mo’Ne Davis, the 18th girl to play in the Little League World Series in its 68-year history, the FIRST girl to throw a Little League World Series SHUTOUT. Her fastball? 70 MILES PER HOUR. #throwlikeagirl #BlackGirlsROCK
…How dare people preach and condescend to these people and tell them not to loot, not to riot? Yes, those are destructive forms of anger, but frankly I would rather these people take their anger out on property and products rather than on other people.
No, I don’t support looting. But I question a society that always sees the product of the provocation and never the provocation itself. I question a society that values property over black life. But I know that our particular system of law was conceived on the founding premise that black lives are white property…
Nothing makes white people more uncomfortable than black anger. But nothing is more threatening to black people on a systemic level than white anger. It won’t show up in mass killings. It will show up in overpolicing, mass incarceration, the gutting of the social safety net, and the occasional dead black kid. Of late, though, these killings have been far more than occasional. We should sit up and pay attention to where this trail of black bodies leads us….
Obviously the police brutality in Ferguson is outrageous, and the execution of Michael Brown cannot be ignored. White people, especially white liberals who proclaim their compassion for human rights, not only need to recognize our complicity in the destruction of pocs’ lives/livelihood, but we need to take responsibility for these types of injustices. It’s not enough to be distantly angry at a system that still appeals to white privilege. If, as white people, we’re actually concerned with dismantling white supremacy, we need to do something about it. Because being a bystander is just as bad as supporting this corrupt system.
The tragic devaluation of black life in the US is evident by the very manner in which the police officer spoke to Michael Brown and Dorian Johnson. As a white person, I would never be told to “get the fuck on the sidewalk.” It simply wouldn’t happen.