Trophy Club, TX
2021, Junior, Art
The process of creating “Forcefully Silent” opened my eyes to a subject I was somewhat oblivious to. I had only heard about contaminated water in Flint, Michigan, and it was years ago. It had never crossed my mind afterwards. I felt like I had to pick the theme of water as a lens through which we can understand and fight for justice for my piece. I am constantly advocating for human rights on social media, with peers, at school, and so on. Clean water is something everyone should have access to, and knowing I haven’t been speaking up about the lack of clean water in predominantly minority and BIPOC communities alarmed me. I had to contribute to this movement, and I told myself I needed to be speaking up about this dilemma. Before starting “Forcefully Silent,” I signed 3 petitions and donated to The Water Well Trust organization to assure myself I was giving a helping hand. My piece was intended to portray the citizens in these communities, and how they are constantly silenced and hushed by multiple authorities and injustices. The tsunami pictured in this piece represents the water in these communities and the factors that are doing the most harm to them. The wave is filthy and polluted, which is an example of some areas and the water they’re given to drink. The words within the water are constantly silencing these people, which are represented protesting for their rights at the bottom of the drawing. Although Flint, Michigan now has clean water, without the protesters and activists in Flint, many privileged people like me wouldn’t even know that some people are given contaminated water to consume. This is why the skyline in the background is representative of the skyline Flint Michigan has currently. This piece brings up many emotions and feelings in me, and now and for the rest of my life I will always be advocating for justice in these communities. They should not be silenced, and they will be heard no matter how many people try to shut them down. Water is a basic human right, and everyone deserves it!