When you hear the name Jim Jones, who do you think of? If you frequent this site, and you heavily follow Hip-Hop, you probably, almost instantly, think of the one-time member of The Diplomats crew. Don’t worry. You’re not alone, as it is pretty common. Noticing this commonality is artist Chris Green, known to followers of his work as Magnus Juliano. Deciding to shed light on the Jim Jones we don’t talk about, who was a cult leader, Magnus has curated an online presentation titled Don’t Drink The Kool-Aid.
“The idea came from a conversation I was having with one of my peers who thought I was talking about the rapper Jim Jones, when I was referencing the infamous cult leader”, Magnus explained. “It made me realize how history can be so easily forgotten about, and when these issues reoccur (in this case religious extremism) my generation is not informed”.
Magnus couldn’t be more right. We live in a time where people are more likely to pick up a phone and log into their favorite social media app, than pick up a book. People are doing less and less research, in favor of going with the flow and following what the new wave is. Sometimes the new wave is something than can be detrimental. People just don’t dedicate the time to educating themselves. Case in point, Donald Trump. While many can see the ignorance he exudes, there are just as many people who are oblivious to it and actually want him to be the next president of the United States; they just know Donald Trump is a celebrity, and they want to be entertained. Don’t Drink The Kool-Aid is a necessary exhibition, because you don’t want to fall victim to a system, simply because you didn’t know enough about it to prevent that.
Artist Statement: I want to shine light on this subject matter of Religious Cults not to offend anyone’s beliefs but to simply educate through artistic expression. My intent is not blasphemy but question and concern. Having conversations with my peers who are not fully informed of this terrible stain in history and subject matter, bothers me. History has a tendency of repeating itself and I want others to reflect their contributions to trends and culture. “The Cool”: The idea to fit in, the idea of your existence, the idea of your ideas. Do they reflect you or do they reflect others views?
You don’t have to drink the “Cool-Aid”.
I created the coloring book for interaction with myself and viewers. I feel as a creative it’s my mission to inspire others to do the same. As we grow from children into adulthood, we tend to lose our imagination. We become focused on drama and neglect our dreams, fantasies, and escapes. That’s where the inspiration of this project stems from. Lost innocence. I want to include you on this idea in hopes you want to be apart as well.
Normally, I would have paraphrased and even condensed that Artist Statement, but every single word above is necessary. Check out Don’t Drink The Kool-Aid here, and for more, you can follow Magnus Juliano on Twitter and Instagram. #StopReligiousCults
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