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Support Black Artists; Be An Ally

Featured image artwork by artist Kendel Joseph, @lucidtraveler_art

We as a community need to show our solidarity with the Black community. As protests continue to spark across not only the nation but the world, we continue to stand in support of the Black community, in support of justice for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, to name a few of, unfortunately, many. Showing one’s solidarity can come in many forms, so we have compiled some ways on how you can support the local Black community in Rhode Island. 

Support Local Black Artists

Below is a list of the Instagram accounts and/or websites of local Black artists that we have compiled. You can support these artists by giving their works the visibility they deserve sharing their work, tapping that heart, and buying local art!

Fashion: Jamall Osterholm, @jamallosterholm

Film: RaMell Ross, @ramellross; Julie Dash,

Fine Arts: Kara Walker, @karawalkerart; Dread Scott, @dreadscottart

Graphic Design: Ramon Tejada,

Illustration: Abenda Sohn, @artofsohn

Painting: Esther Calixte-Bea, @artist_esie; Ashton Agbomenou, @ashtonagbomenou; Eric Telfort, @etelfort; Daria-Lyric Montaquila, @darialyric

Public Art: Kendel Joseph, @lucidtraveler_art; Agonza Art, @agonzaart; Natural’s Natural, @naturalsnatural

Textiles: Natyana Fancesca, @naatyana; Qualeasha Wood, @qualeasha; Nadia Wolff, @decolonial.daughter

Support Local Black-Owned Businesses

Bookmark these lists from our media partners Rhode Island Monthly and Providence Monthly. Rhode Island Monthly has compiled a list of local Black-owned businesses. The Providence Monthly Media Staff have collected a list of local Black-owned restaurants and ways to support the Black Lives Matter Movement in Rhode Island. A long-time WaterFire partner, Gary Wallace is the owner of Hall of GraFX and can meet your large format printing needs.

Take some time out of your day to support these businesses, whether it is purchasing from their establishment or even simply sharing the lists with your friends and family. 

Support Organizations who Support the Black Community

Consider donating to local organizations that support the Black community, such as the Rhode Island Black Business Association, Stages of Freedom, Riverzedge Arts, Project Open Door, or SISTA FIRE.

Be an Ally

The Providence Student Union compiled several lists of resources specifically for allies of the Black Lives Matter Movement that can help educate and point you in the right direction of support. Another great resource is the Guide to Allyship an evolving open-source guide to help you become a more thoughtful and effective ally by Amelia Lamont.

Everyone has a part to play in this battle, no matter how small. Enough is Enough. Black Lives Matter.

If you know any other artists that belong on this list, please add a comment below and we will be sure to keep it updated.

About the author

Creative Services Summer 2020 Intern at WaterFire Providence | + posts by author

Rising fourth year in Brown|RISD Dual Degree Program, studying graphic design and chemical physics.

+ posts by author

I am a rising junior at the Rhode Island School of Design, and an intern with WaterFire Providence for Summer 2020.

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