It's my fifth blog about the MwP project, and it's the first week of our next 4 week cycle. I don't know, nor want to know what week of the pandemic we're in now.
So much has changed since the start of the project.
The city is currently boarding up to prepare for some messy riots this weekend. I've gone from painting everyday to no paintings this week. The last couple pieces I made were the evening of Regis Korchinski's death, which was clearly a murder. I started some micro paintings of the buildings I can see from my balcony the day of, and when night fell, and the tweets started flooding in - I made the piece I eventually shared on Instagram.
My grief mobilized, the piece spread like wildfire. It has now been bookmarked 783 times, shared 3,852 times and reached 51,158 screens. There were over 100 comments, and less than 15 were triggering or gaslighting, which actually felt manageable and wasn't too bad. The trolls were the usual suspects, profiles of seemingly white youths and/or military men.
As a non-Black person, I felt so helpless that night, angry from why noone was talking about what had happened to Regis beyond a few tweets. Maybe its the effect of capitalism, but it feels good to know that image spread the way it did. I feel like in some small way, I may have helped increase visibility to what happened to Regis, while warning TPS we knew what had happened.
It was hard not to paint the whole page in reds.
All this is to say, I felt like I made a small difference. Then more news came out, more grief before previous grief had been processed. I made a piece to immortalize how I was feeling in that moment about cops. The doughnuts were fun to paint. It was hard not to paint the whole page in reds.
I don't know when I'll paint on paper again, I did paint my face today to film my debut drag performance for Toronto Pride. I incorporated some feelings about pigs from the painting above, into mu performance piece. Performing to my partner holding my phone in my apartment instead of a real audience staring back at me at a venue was extremely comfortable, and comforting. I got to use a ring light for the first time as a part of the loaned equipment from Pride Toronto, and do set design for the piece. I learned I really want a ring light, and actually enjoy set design. I'm looking forward to sharing this piece with folks, and look forward to donating half my tips to a community organization that supports Black trans folks. I'm going to research and see if we have something like The Okra Project in Toronto. If you haven't heard about them before, this is what they do in New York, The Okra Project is a collective that seeks to address the global crisis faced by Black Trans people by bringing home cooked, healthy, and culturally specific meals and resources to Black Trans People wherever we can reach them.
Trigger Warning for transmisogyny, misogynoir, transphobia and Iyanna Dior in the next section.
I also created some work in the digital realm today after filming the drag performance: a week's worth of content to post for a raffle fundraiser to support Iyanna Dior. Iyanna Dior is a Black trans woman who was recently attacked by a mob of cis men. I don't want to share any articles around that, but if you see this blog before 5 pm EST on June 12, check out the raffle info on instagram.com/stickymangos. If you're based in the States, you can actually just directly cash app her, but we don't have cash app in kkkanada. Her cash app info is $IyannaDIO
To wrap up this week's notes, I'll leave us with this uncredited quote I screenshotted this week that made me feel a little lighter, "Art is the highest form of hope".