Artist collective and art gallery Crenshaw Dairy Mart, co-founded by Patrisse Cullors, Alexandre Dorriz and Noé Olivas, launch their virtual call to action “CARE NOT CAGES: Processing a Pandemic.” This initiative is an online exhibition that centers fourteen artworks produced by six currently incarcerated artists. Specifically, three of the artworks exhibited were made in response to the global pandemic due to at least 48,764 incarcerated individuals testing positive for COVID-19. In naming the disproportionate effects on the incarcerated community, this exhibition seeks to highlight a community’s recorded responses to this moment, ensuring their narratives surrounding this pandemic are public, forthright, and asserted on view.
The initiative focuses on how incarceration, detention, and imprisonment are a spatial violation of the right to live, and at every instance, a form of torture. In the words of Patrisse Cullors, artist, abolitionist, and co-founder of Black Lives Matter and the Crenshaw Dairy Mart, “we are calling for a world that prioritizes abolition”. Participating artists include Ras Allen, Mesro the Human Sun, Ronell Draper, Miguel Flores AKA Smoke, Orlando Smith, and Larry White, all of whom have consented to the exhibition and sale of their works online.
ART COMPETITION: In addition to this call to action, Crenshaw Dairy Mart teamed up with Justice LA, For Freedoms, and Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB) for a one-time artists’ relief fund in support of artists struggling from Covid-19 derived economic hardship. The competition allowed submissions in any art form and encouraged individuals to respond to the prompt “Care Not Cages.” Selected winners won cash prizes of $1,500, $1,000 and $500 and any previously/currently incarcerated artist submissions were awarded with $250.
Care Not Cages Art Contest Winners:
1st – Paul Cullors
2nd – Sam Jean Wilson
3rd – Jordi
Mestro The Human Sun
WHO: The Crenshaw Dairy Mart is founded by three artist-gallerist-organizers (Patrisse Cullors, Alexandre Dorriz, Noé Olivas) who all hold an MFA from USC Roski school of Art and Design.
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