As the nation continues to protest the brutal murder of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police Department, artists have taken to social media (and the skies) to offer their views on the current moment as well as call for social justice, police reform and the end of systemic racism. In Denver, local multimedia design company Deep Space Drive-In is doing their part by projecting activist art onto a large, downtown building.
The first projections took place on May 29, just four days after Floyd was killed, with a second event happening on June 1; now the plan is to do the projections every Monday night. At first, company founders Travis Powell and Geoffrey Dohrmann reached out to artists to use their works, but the hope is that artists will contact DSDI via Instagram for a chance to show their work on the building wall.
“Our feeling was that we were not doing enough to assist breaking the cyclical nature of systemic racism and injustice by sharing on traditional social media platforms,” Powell and Dohrmann told 303 Magazine. “We felt that the best thing we could do as allies was be a platform for artists and community leaders that needed to be heard while the dialogue of disenfranchisement was this active.”
So far, writers, musicians, street artists and photographers have all participated in the exhibit, including DINKC, Matador, Akubis Design, Armando Geneyro, Zoid Hæm, Chris Haven, Juan Fuentes, TheyCallHimAP, SpeakS, Andrea Slusarski, Justin Spire, Kalli Padgett, Tyler Neyland, Brooke Anderson, Rube Zilla and Colorado Poet Laureate Bobby LeFebre. The artworks range from protest posters to written statements addressed to "White America" and have included direct commentary on George Floyd and police brutality as well as reflections of broader issues facing Black people and non-Black minorities today.
Dohrmann and Powell added, “The stern message of complacency breeding insurrection felt powerful to show on our platform and is among the reasons why we believed we should continue doing our projections.”
DSDI’s weekly exhibit will occur Monday nights from about 9pm until midnight in Denver.
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