Last Wednesday I watched this panel, previously recorded:
They discussed Black activism and broader inclusion in the arts. These 90 minutes are well worth your time.
As soon as the discussion finished, I left these remarks in the comment section:
This discussion was so insightful, and so necessary. This is the day after riding on the cautious optimism of the Chauvin verdicts, then going to bed with the news of Ma’Kiah Bryant and waking up this morning angry. I’ve been trying to learn how to support Black people, to empathize deeply, to unlearn the ingrained racism that I grew up with while – as an Asian American, in this past year particularly – feeling unsafe as I read headlines of Asian hate. Navigating all these human paths, all the nuance, is so important. Listening to the wisdom of all the artists on this panel was encouraging. I loved how you all supported each other and acknowledged the process of becoming better, being intentional and uncomfortable, chipping away slowly at racism in the arts, making small, deliberate yet significant efforts to be more inclusive, to create belonging in lesser represented groups. I wish I knew about this series sooner, but I will go back and watch the previous episodes. Thanks so much for this.
I let the comment sit there, not knowing what to expect. There weren’t a ton of views at the time. Mine was the first and only comment. After a whole day with no other engagement with the video, I began to feel self-conscious about my comment. Did I say something wrong? Did I offend anyone? Was this video not for me? Should I have pointed out how vulnerable and willing to learn Hilary Hahn was by expressing to this all-black panel how much she didn’t know yet? Perhaps, to all these questions.
By Friday morning I decided to delete the comment. I felt that it wasn’t my place to say anything. And I’m perfectly fine working behind the scenes. (Obviously in my own blog space I feel more comfortable.)
Anyway, that’s all I have. I do want to see more diversity and representation in the arts. More access to opportunities. Better funding for access. An eventual unwinding of privilege to allow for truly equal opportunity for all.
I don’t know if this makes any sense. Just sorting through thoughts, I guess.
But I do want to donate to organizations, like Project 440, whose mission centers around opportunities in the arts for youth in minority groups.
If you have the resources, you should donate, too.