• Stacey R. Queen

I'm Here for Protest Street Artists

Anonymous British street artist Banksy has 9.6 million followers on Instagram making him or her one of the most popular unknown contemporary creatives of our time. Street art is so dope and beyond the restrictive parameters of art world academia, upper-crust private galleries, and finely curated museum exhibitions, yet it captivates viewers and leaves us feeling moved and inspired. While pre-historic cave art dates back more than 60,000 years to the Neolithic and Paleolithic age today's street works on walls often express political and social matters and feature hashtags of notable names and concise movements. The Black Lives Matter movement has been trending for six years and since the outrage surrounding the

2012 death of Trayvon Martin and has not lost a bit of momentum. Across the country and abroad we've witnessed marches and protests that support the struggle of black and brown people involved in the most egregious acts against humanity. Through the hurt and pain arise moments of light, of creativity, of artistry and talent that appears like, in the words of the late great, poetic genius, Tupac Shakur, the rose that grew from concrete. In the most random places, boarded-up buildings become canvases for Banksy-like artists who are popping up to create the most beautiful murals of life, love, and freedom. Street art is the perfect conduit to capture these difficult moments and memorialize the legacy of the fallen. Through the devastation of the lives lost street art brings a moment of beauty to help ease the pain. One thing our Neolithic and Paleolithic artists ancestors, Banksy, and current street artists have in common is the ability to be self-expressive and create visual works that bring to life cave walls, boarded-up buildings, monuments, and structures that will be recorded in the history books as social and artistic movements by the people for the people.

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