Portfolio > Original Artwork

social justice civil rights
Mourning Social Justice
acrylic spraypaint on canvas
48"H x 36"W
2014

This artwork may be considered a capstone painting for all others of mine that speak to social issues – the wealth gap, police militarization, gun violence and the need for reforms in immigration policy, campaign finance regimes and financial sector oversight. Those who promote social justice strive for a world where all members of a society, regardless of background or procedural justice, have basic human rights and equal access to the benefits of their society. The woman in the painting was appropriated from Evelyn Pickering De Morgan’s work entitled In Memorium (1890). Mr. Arnold Prieto, who was executed in Texas on 21 January 2015, and a representative organization (Minutes Before Six) permitted the appropriation of Lady Justice imagery from Prieto’s sketch entitled “Texas Death Machine”. While Mr. Prieto did not contest his conviction, his circumstances permit a reference to procedural justice, an issue not addressed specifically in any of my artwork. Texas is the state with the highest number of prisoners found to be innocent following DNA testing according to the Innocence Project, a national organization working to exonerate wrongfully convicted people. Of the 241 inmates who had their convictions overturned as a result of DNA testing since 1989, 38 have been in Texas. Combined, these 38 men spent more than 500 years in prison for crimes they did not commit.