Drawing inspiration from the James Baldwin quote, "If I love you, I have to make you conscious of the things you don't see," multimedia artist Jennifer Johns presented a healing transmutation ritual designed to employ the radical power of love to confront and reveal the inequalities of the criminal justice system and the violence and discrimination experienced by African Americans and other persons of color. Describing this new work, Johns states, "Racism is a horrible symptom of a disease called Fear. Liv is a ritual aimed at clearing away this all-consuming fear by allowing us to look plainly at the violence African Americans experience. Using love, and through song and movement, we will replace that fear with collective agency and joy."
Jennifer Johns (Aquarius)
Kevin Shaw (Cop)
"Baba" Greg Hodge (Libation)
Marquis LaNail Thomas Engle (Cuffing Officer)
David Lee Walker, Jr. (Cuffing Officer)
Dr. Shawn Ginwright (Officer)
Ajayi Jackson (Officer)
Ross Robinson (Officer)
Terrance Jerod (Videographer)
Meet the Artist
Musician and Performer Jennifer Johns
Jennifer Johns creates sounds and experiences that are sure to stir your soul, inspire your mind and move your body. This powerhouse vocalist, songwriter and producer alternates between soul, hip hop, afro beat, dancehall, rock, reggae, deep house and more. Rocking stages from Denver to Dusseldorf, Los Angeles to London, Kuala Lumpur to Kampala, Jennifer has shared line-ups with the likes of Ms. Lauryn Hill, The Black Eyed Peas, Mos Def, Capelton, Ziggy Marley, Gil Scott Heron, Wyclef, Les Nubian, De La Soul and Common. Her journey as a recording artist began in 2004 with the underground success of her first album, HeavyElectroMagneticSoularPoeticJungleHop. In response to her need for meaning in her craft, Johns shifted from the entertainment industry to leveraging her art for social movements. Johns' soul-inspiring sounds have landed her gigs at The Kennedy Center, The Apollo, and on stage for both NFL World Bowl and The NFL Hall of Fame. Learn more about Jennifer Johns at jenniferjohnsmusic.com.
Art on the Grounds 2018: We the People
Montalvo Arts Center kicks off its annual Art on the Grounds exhibition this summer with an opening art festival titled We the People. For 2018, the Art on the Grounds installations will include three newly-commissioned works by Lucas Artists Fellows: an innovative sound walk, a communally planted peace garden, and a large-scale art installation.
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