THIS IS NOT A GUN, 2016 - present
For more information on the community wing of this work, please follow link to thisisnotagun.com.
This is Not A Gun, jelutong, scaled to life, 2016 - present
This Is Not A Gun is a 2 part project.
1. A studio based work described here.
2. A community based work described at thisisnotagun.com, as well as briefly, below.
First came the carvings. It began In December of 2016, when I saw a list of objects which have all been mistaken as guns by police officers in civilian shootings, since 2001 (Harpers Magazine). The objects include: wrench, cordless-drill, water-hoze nozzle, flashlight, shower rod, cane, broomstick, hairbrush, sunglasses, bottle of cologne, underwear, tinfoil, bottle of beer, pill bottle, e-cigarette, cell phone, wallet, iPod, Wii remote, toy truck, sandwich, and bible. I felt I had to see and touch these objects - to give them presence and to call attention to their not-gun-ness. I began carving the objects from the list as an act of prayer, respect and remembrance. While I carve I am listening to books, essays and rhetoric about the history of race in the U.S.. While I work to live equitably, I do not presume to know all this history, or the ways in which I participate in it. I am invested in learning and in repairing where I can.
The 2nd part of this project comes in the form of workshop. Using these objects as catalyst, I am co-hosting conversations about institutional racism, gun violence inflicted by police, and holding space for what comes up in the physical space of looking at and touching these objects. I work alongside with local artist/activist collaborators in various cities.
October 7 2017, This Is Not A Gun with Alicia Inez Guzman and Pete Jackson, at the Santa Fe Art Institute. Sponsored by form & concept gallery, Santa Fe Community College, New Mexico Clay, and with proceeds of the sold artwork benefitting New Mexicans to Prevent Gun Violence.
April 16th 2018, This Is Not A Gun at Sonoma State University Ceramics Department, co-hosted with the SSU BSU.
May 25-27, This Is Not A Gun, at GroundShift, Hancock NY, with Kirat Randhawa of MNDFL Meditation.
Information about these events will be posted on my Upcoming page.
#thisisnotagun selections from instagram feed
Selected images from Tenderloin Museum and Santa Fe Art Institute