you're not color-blind 2020

This piece is about what it means to exist in
white space. The tension that exists in tr ying to
be white enough to fit into white space, is one
I have grappled with all my life. I am constantly
confronted with situations in which I am asked
to remove my Black identity for the comfort of
others. The woman in the painting represents
the version of me people are constantly waiting
for me to turn into; the man in the painting
represents an intentional aversion to my
Blackness. But I refuse to let my Blackness be
ignored any longer. It is not invisible and it is
not irrelevant . It’s one of the very best things
about me.

Both Happen 2020

Both Happen” attempts to
provide a more complete image to the unjust ways in which the police system operates in America.
This juxtaposition asserts that even though there are cops that are humane, civil, and upright it
doesn’t mean racist and violent cops do not operate their oppression in the same system. The
painting ultimately questions the validity of a system that allows for Floyd’s murder to happen.

you're why i'm dead 2020

The idea of this painting started with a feeling of complete and utter exhaustion. Specifically, the
feeling or sense of defeat around the oppressive history of black people and that it is repeating
itself. “you’re why I’m dead” references the lynching of black people in America from 1882 to 1968.
Lynchings were a popular way of resolving some of the anger that whites had towards the free blacks
in the south. The lynching of Black people in America was used as a way to control freed slaves.
These horrific acts were used as warnings against Black people who were getting away with “too
much” freedom. Almost 50 years later, Black people are being found hanging from trees once again.
These murders are being written off as suicides with little to no investigation. The painting consists
of two panels that depict juxtaposing scenes.

Note: The text above was written by the Artist. No modification was made by COCA.

Destiny Kirumira


Destiny Kirumira is a Black visual artist and current architecture student. Born in Germany to parents from Uganda, Destiny moved to Canada when she was nine. Through both her architecture and paintings, she attempts to reconstruct and reconcile the roots of racism in both fields and does so rigorously. She has produced work for non-profit organizations doing work to bring an end to human trafficking and continues to attempt to create work that challenges norms that harm human life. Ultimately, her art poses questions surrounding race, gender, and politics with the aim of enlightening those of us who have chosen to turn a blind eye to the world’s most grotesque injustices.

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