On June 24th, Smack Mellon will present the second Race and Revolution exhibition in a series that utilizes a combination of contemporary artworks and historical documents as a platform to examine patterns of systemic racism in the United States. This edition, entitled Race and Revolution: Still Separate - Still Unequal, investigates the prevalence of segregation in the American public school system.
Since the inception of #BlackLivesMatter in 2012, the American population is reflecting on what happened after the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s-60s. That word “after” is part of the conundrum that surrounds our present-day conversation around race and racism. What exactly came to an end? The exhibition Still Separate - Still Unequal seeks to examine ongoing racial and economic disparity in the U.S. public school system. Reports in 2014, the year that marked the sixtieth anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Brown V. Board of Education decision declaring segregated schools as unconstitutional, showed an increase in school segregation. How has this happened, and how can we use art to push the conversation into the public discourse in a new and provocative way?
The practice of segregating students by class, race, and “aptitude” in the interest of creating a “better” learning environment has produced a systemic crisis that reverberates within the education system across the United States. Results include the preponderance of controversial policies that adversely impact students and teachers. This summer, eighteen artists, many of whom teach in New York City public schools, offer their perspectives on the enduring legacy of racial and economic school segregation in the United States. Curated by: Kathryn Fuller & Larry Ossei-Mensah.
Artists: Mitsuko Brooks, Dennis Redmoon Darkeem, Damien Davis, Dominique Duroseau, Uraline Setpembre Hager, L. Kasimu Harris, Olalekan Jeyifous, Mona Kamal, jc lenochan, Karen Lomax, Carina Maye, Kayla Muldrow, Shervone Neckles, Iviva Olenick, Nicole Soto-Rodríguez, Aram Han Sifuentes, Marvin Toure, and Antoine Williams.