i am a critical socially conscious artist. the art i create reflects my research about injustice, inequality, and otherness. when the Black Lives Matter movement began, i didn’t grasp its significance. i wasn’t used to asking critical questions about race in the United States. then, i took a class my junior year at UArts that opened my eyes to my own privilege as a white woman, and to the layers of systemic injustice minorities in this country face. i see the history that shaped the way many black lives look today. i see my friends staring through the car window as Aunt Lil, my beautiful black nanny, picked me up from school. i see white faces of my neighbors uncomfortable with our close relationship. i see a close friend fighting for rights to her own body. i see her be brave and speak up about her rapist, and i see her brave actions go ignored by the institution that claimed to protect her. i see my dad, a gay man, wait 52 years to come out because of the fear he harbored for simply being himself. i see myself, a 16 year old, afraid to tell my classmates about him because of the ridicule i was sure would be thrown behind my back. i see lives being recklessly taken from this world with automatic bullets. and i see an institution that would rather point a finger then make it right. these new sights are just the beginning for me; i am constantly refreshing my sight, and with that comes the acknowledgment that there is always more. i will let my new learnings run through me as the blood flow of my art making. i will struggle with them, evolve with them, and live with them. i will make a statement about what i see and i will never stop being curious. i have my body, i have my art, and i believe that my art can make an impact.