My grandfather was chased out of Mississippi by the Ku Klux Klan. His family, like millions of others, fled up the river to Chicago, a city notorious for its segregation and its homicide rate. This, resultantly, would be my home. How do moments of violence define us? I dream of engaging grassroots movements in ways that transcend traditional “movement artist” involvement. I want to link stories from victim perspectives into narratives of incarceration and gang-based violentization. I want to investigate personal loss, the myth of democracy, the emptiness of exceptionalism. Most importantly, I want to talk about these things in a new way that actually builds material power. Through organizing and legislative advocacy, I’m afforded the opportunity to address issues of violence within a context of economic equity, racial justice, and reconciliation. As an artist, this means bringing along a framework of restoration and creativity. These all converge on the canvas.