The war in Vietnam had been raging on for 13 years by the time 68’ rolled around, and contrary to what U.S. Officials said, the dawn of a new year did not bring any signs of change. The Vietnamese have a long history of attacking on a holiday, as it is least expected by the enemy. The Vietnamese New Year, January 30th, also did not bring change. The pro north Viet Cong launched a rogue attack of 6,700 troops on 36 province capitals and 5 major cities in an assault known as The Tet Offensive, which brought radical change in the way we viewed the war.
April 4th, 1968
Even before Martin Luther King’s assassination, the Civil Rights movement was in shambles. Falling victim to a series of infighting, the movement was suffering from a conflict in identity, a theme all too pervasive this year. King’s choice not to participate in the freedom rides sent ripples through the Civil Rights movement, causing some to question his devotion. Others thought he was just in it for media attention. Under constant surveillance by the F.B.I. and a movement dividing behind him, King’s own physical and mental state began to deteriorate. He gained a significant amount of weight and became depressed. His speeches became focused on death as he felt change was not happening quickly enough. With the rise of the Black Panther Party, nonviolence was wearing thin. A lifetime supporter of nonviolent tactics, even King began to question himself, and was at one point quoted “Maybe we just have to admit that the day of violence is here, and maybe we have to just give up and let violence take its course. The nation won’t listen to our voice. Maybe it will heed the voice of violence.”
June 6th, 1968
In the midst of the turmoil in Vietnam, the deterioration of Civil Rights, and the rioting and protesting, 1968 was also a Presidential Election year. With the election came displays of power, ambition, and the instillment of hope. A rallying to the American citizens that everything is going to be okay; and no candidate for office embodied that more than Bobby Kennedy. America had been through hell in the past decade, reeling from assassination after assassination. Bobby’s personal suffering from the death of his brother in 1963, the Nation’s President John F. Kennedy, positioned him as an empathic figure. Bobby shared his brother’s charismatic “made for T.V.” quality, and was very outspoken against the war in Vietnam. At the California primary he finally surpassed Eugene McCarthy’s considerable lead, the only other anti-war, anti-establishment candidate, by 48 to 42 percent. “And now it’s on to Chicago, and let’s win there,” he said. The party was seemingly unified behind him in his message of hope. Only minutes later, Bobby was shot 3 times by a Jordanian man named Sirhan Sirhan over his support for Israel. There on the kitchen floor of The Ambassador Hotel, hope died, and the Democratic Party with it
August 28th, 1968
The Democratic National Convention of 1968 was an event of civil unrest and violence between civilians and authority that was unprecedented within politics. The major source of tension stemmed from the Democratic Party’s divided state in the wake of Bobby Kennedy’s assassination. Prior to his death, Bobby Kennedy and Eugene McCarthy ran against the incumbent Lindon Johnson for the primary nomination. Johnson eventually dropped out due to dissent within his own party because of discontent with the conditions of the Vietnam War. After Kennedy’s death, Eugene McCarthy, the distinctly anti war candidate, was left to run against Hubert Humphry, who was Johnson’s vice president and seen as an extension of Johnson and the war establishment. While 80% of primary voters voted for both McCarthy and Kennedy for their anti war stance, Humphry was being backed by his party which represented continuation of the war. Humphry ultimately won the nomination, which led the general public to believe that the DNC was rigged
Part of my Jazz Series, Coltrane was monumental to the Jazz world for pushing the limits of what could be done with the Saxophone. Creating "Sheets of Sound," he was revolutionary for bringing his spirituality to the forefront of Jazz, utilizing his instrument as an extension of himself. Something I continually find inspiring.
Part of my Jazz series, Mixed media, collage, spray paint, Acrylic paint.
Part of my Jazz series
Despite having a small range of one octave, Billie Holiday had a voice with an incredible impact. Her life was filled with suffering and it found its way into the very character of her voice. An Incredible Jazz singer, she could sing the blues like no other, because she felt what she sang.
Grand Master Flash
Commission for Columbia magazine, feature article on young composer Nico Muhly
Seeing Heaven in Shadows
There is a theme that runs throughout my personal work, A theme of life as performance, an understanding that my personal perspective and understanding of the world is a flawed abstraction of reality. Attempting to see the world through perfect absolute truths is impossible. This led me to love Plato's Allegory of the Cave.
With the invention of VR, we are watching the growth of influence the cave has on our lives. Some people embrace this new distraction, while others revile at its reality bending capabilities. What they fail to realize is regardless, the walls around them are just props, and the environment is nothing but a stage. We all end up attributing heaven to shadows in the cave.
Thank You Thank You Thank You
Piece about the rapid rate of pollution
JFK's death launched the Space Race, a mission that seemed a waste of financial and scientific research became a symbol of nationalistic pride, both a constant reminder of the severity of the times and a distraction from it.
Half Price Books
Product mock ups for an advertising campaign for a book store. Exploring ideas of how books take you places. Sketches to final imagery. Gift card and a tote bag. The scuba diver tote bag features tentacles that turn into the handles, the image wraps to be seamlessly loop around the product.