The Trans Life & Liberation Art Series creates art about and with living trans people on the front lines of our liberation movement.
About this project
What is the Trans Life & Liberation Art Series?
It’s a weekly series of collaborative portraits created about and with living trans people on the front lines of our liberation movement. Trans visual artists across the U.S. work with other artists and organizers to create portraits that tell their stories and honor their work.
Since February 2016 we have been creating one portrait each week. The project centers trans women and femmes of color, and disabled and incarcerated trans people of color. Art is shared on social media and used to support trans justice organizing and fundraising.
As Janet Mock said: “We can’t only celebrate trans women of color in memoriam. We must begin uplifting trans women of color, speaking their names and praises, in their lives.” Or, in the words of BreakOUT! trans youth in New Orleans: “Give us our roses while we are still here!” At this time of intense violence and oppression, this project is a way for trans people to celebrate and support each other while we are alive.
Portrait participants (aka the people pictured in the art) include: Eisha Love, LaSaia Wade, Christina Lopez, Rickie Blue-Sky, Isa Noyola, Elle Hearns, Micky Bradford, Malcolm Shanks, Aaryn Lang, Juniper Cordova-Goff, Tanesh Nutall, Kay Ulanday Barrett, Kiki Williams, Ky Peterson, Noah Jenkins, Luna Merbruja, Raquel Willis, Janetta Johnson, and Lexi Adsit. And more every week!
Advisory Council includes: Reina Gossett, Edxie Betts, Patricia Berne, Mariame Kaba, Hope Dector, Chucha Marquez, H Kapp Klote, ill weaver/invincible, Gabriel Foster, Dalia Rubiano Yedidia, and Talcott Broadhead.
This project is led by artists who are part of the trans liberation movement. Many social justice organizations are working with us, including Sins Invalid, Barnard Center for Research on Women, Strong Families, Get Equal, and Survived and Punished.
Whenever possible, we work with organizers to use the art to support their campaigns. For example, we worked with Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement to create art for Christina Lopez, and help raise emergency funds to free her from immigrant detention. We collaborated with Ky Peterson, his partner, and several organizations, to release his portrait in coordination with a petition, new media coverage, and a #Justice4Ky Twitter power hour. As a result, more than 100,000 people heard about his case, and more than 4000 signed the petition for Ky’s release and parole.
Where Is The Money Going?
Your donation will primarily support the artists and participants.
(All artists are being paid unless they choose to donate their honorarium back to the project. Micah Bazant is donating their work.)
Depending on funding, this project may continue through 2017, although we may transition to a monthly schedule that is more, ahem, sustainable.
Winter/Spring 2017 Show: We are planning at least one exhibition of the work, in Winter/Spring 2017 in Oakland. It will include an accessible opening event and a panel bringing together visionary disability justice and trans justice organizers. We plan to document these conversations and create short videos about the intersections of these two movements. We will also make the full set of prints available for other shows across the country.
Coloring Book: At the conclusion of the project we will publish a Trans Life & Liberation Coloring Book! Any profits will be directed back to participants.
Full Color Limited Edition Art Book: We also hope to publish a beautiful full color book of all the art and written statements by all participants and artists. Any profits from the book will be redistributed back to participants.
Risks and challenges
We do not anticipate any risks or challenges to complete this project!