week 52 || 2016

Like many, I take the final few days of the calendar year to reflect-partly because I’ve been conditioned to do so, partly because of this new moon and partly because it coincides with yet another solar return. Whooop! And I am so fortunate to be another year older with a positive future on the horizon. I lost a family friend to cancer on the first day of 2015 who happened to be just one month older than me. The anger and sadness from her loss helped propel my shift from run-of-the-mill fashion blogger to sliiightly fearless, multifaceted, more authentic blogger. Death, especially when it’s a young person and hits close to home, is a painful reminder that hey, you could be next. Your time will come. So what the heck are you doing in the meantime!?? For those of you who started following the suede since then, you are definitely getting the best of me thus far. Although I’m still very private + somewhat tight lipped on certain subjects, I am continuously inspired to allow a more unfiltered Kelley to express herself.

With that being said, I’m thankful for each of my readers and subscribers; those of you who check in weekly, comment on every entry or who are just tuning in for the first time, I see you. I appreciate you. For those of you writing and sharing humorous, smart, spirited, original posts, you bring awareness, keep me grounded, give me hope, stimulate my mind and make me question everything I’ve ever believed in-which sums up how I believe this whole blogging thing should operate.

So, thank you 😉

I’ll keep it short and leave you with this quote for when you’re feeling down, as if you’re wasting your time practicing art [which includes writing!] or just simply uninspired to keep at life:

A billion people can have your gifts and talents but none of them can do it like YOU.

Best wishes for 2017. Be safe and don’t drink and drive!

I’ll holler.

How many Black men were left after . . .? [a reblog]

chlkbrd

In the Service of our Ancestors and African Love, Listen Seeker, I come in peace, “It is vain that we talk of being men, if we do not the work of men” – Frederick Douglass It was asked of me, if I am so good at math, why don’t I teach our kids the subject? […]

via How many Black men were left after . . .? — African Blood Siblings

Remnants of the Human Condition

Human Condition: “the characteristics, key events, and situations which compose the essentials of human existence… such as birth, growth, conflict, and mortality… including religion, philosophy, history, art, and sociology.”

20161116_185453

I was personally invited by one of the curators to view Remnants of the Human Condition. You know, all exclu xclu (pronounced: ex(s)klOO skloo) style in my business inbox. What?! So I had to go. The synopsis was intriguing: (Joseph) Guay’s thought-provoking exhibit will examine the characteristics, events and situations that encompass human existence, such as birth, growth, conflict and mortality. “Remnants of the Human Condition” will explore the difficult topics in the media that attempt to sum up the human condition and will allow the audience to experience a differing visual approach that will broaden their views and beliefs. source

Most of the pieces were meticulously made from bullets, casings, gun powder, motor oil and glass-something my eyes had never seen. Just more proof that art is everything and anything can be made into art, right. I appreciate Guay’s efforts and the attention he’s bringing to certain issues, but I don’t think he quite gets it. In his statement, he does make some great points, but it goes much much deeper than “civilians” getting their hands on military grade weapons + ammunition. It’s more than a question of who should own guns. His exhibition highlighted shooting murders by cops as well as civilians, yet most of the victims depicted are Black [with the exception of Sandy Hook, which to me, is unbelievable]. Yet this significant detail was not once mentioned in his statement. The skin color and ethnic makeup of the shooting victims were never mentioned actually.

Maybe that was my bad, attending a show with the pre/misconception of an artist who, although not Black himself,  I thought was an ally or at least believed that these murderers should be called out on their acts of terrorism. A man who felt the need to probe not only the reality that we are disproportionately attacked + executed, but why.

Silly me.

20161116_185012

The show was interesting. Major visual appeal. The depiction of Trayvon with a head of Skittles facing a wall of black hoodies-the center hoodie in a crucified position- was quite haunting. And it always makes my heart sink thinking of this boy’s senseless murder. After learning of Guay’s vision and journey to create these works, I was a bit disappointed to learn that yes, he is an artist whose art reflects the times, but still doesn’t quite understand, or fails to state that he understands, that Black people and other people of color are under attack. Under attack by people that look like him, people that look like me, strangers, cops, and familiars alike. From every direction. Every day.

20161116_185831.jpg

In Guay’s statement, he says he would just like people to expand whatever perspective they already have and truly think about the issues at hand. I hope he heeds his own hopes and continues to learn about the genocide of the victims he spotlights in his work.

 

coloreds only

Thanks for sharing this interesting video, Melanin Man. Imagine how different this country might be if we never “integrated”.. I see more pros than cons.

week 51 | 2016

you, you

You ever wonder how much of

your stress is perpetual?

Or how many times you’ve placed yourself on

pedestals on the backs

of your peers’ mishaps, failures,

misdirection, misinformation, and demise.

if it’s your fear

apprehension or condescension that ghostwrite your choices?

Or if your conviction or stubbornness defines you?

I guess I say this to ask..

Are you the “you” – you think you are?

© dáe

Black Hair v. White Laws [a reblog]

It’s modern day colonization. An invasion of our follicles. A new Black Code.

I say bleep that bleep and do not support anyone or anything that doesn’t accept our hair in its natural glory. And yes, that includes schools and workplaces. I know it’s often easier said than done because we need jobs, right? Maybe. Some source of income. Sure. But why would I subject myself to mistreatment for wearing my hair how it’s been historically worn? You know, straight from my scalp.

Why does it matter what my hair looks like if I’m qualified with a great work ethic?

If it’s not a safety or hygienic concern, then why have these conversations?

Maaaaybe because it can only apply to us with our natural hair that grows up like a flower kissing the sky or can mimic the roots, branches and trunk of a mighty Baobab. Maybe it’s that deep seated, murder-what-I-can’t-control hateration, a culturally exclusive rule for the only people that can rock big kinky fros, cornrows, Bantu knots, and locs. Effortlessly. Without appropriating or looking dirty or foolish.

Shrugs.

Maybe.

“do we really want justice scalia weighing in on black hair?” my white law school classmate thought his statement was funny, but it made me feel invisible. i was sitting in my american racism and the… View Post

via From Cornrows to Dreadlocks: Why It’s Time the Court Respected Black Hair — politics & fashion