Mar 29, 2011

My Teaching/Learning Memories

I started teaching in 2002 I believe. As a volunteer first, then as a paid instructor. It was two of my high school teachers, Mr. Hodari Davis and Ms Julia Luna that gave me my first shot. I haven't really stopped teaching since then, I've taken breaks though. I've taught all over the Bay Area (Richmond, Pinole, Berkeley, Oakland, SF, Palo Alto, San Rafael)and when i moved to Brooklyn NY I had the chance to teach in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. Working with Trust Your Struggle (amazing educators/artists) Ive done workshops in other states too like Connecticut, Massachusetts, Arizona, and more I'm forgetting.

I've worked with small classes and small organizations, and huge classrooms and huge organizations. All different races and ages. Beautiful classrooms and stuffy basements. Thousands of kids, so many lessons learned from each of them. All the energy, frustration, curiosity,rebelliousness, slang, and wisdom they give when you share time with them has made me who I am. Its made me a better artist, a better man, and a better father. Don't get me wrong there have been some kids I've had to exercise super patience with. But those were usually the ones who needed to feel acceptance and love the most.

In the past two years I've pulled back from teaching greatly.I've worked with some really great teachers, artists, and coordinators.But none of them could mask the feeling that I was not reaching my students. There are times when I wished I could take my kids out of the school completely. Sometimes the system in which we as educators are working in is archaic, brutal, toxic, and poisonous. The kids are hyper intelligent, and they sense it. Sometimes I get the feeling that they've seen me the same way I see the system of public education. One which used to have countless classes in cooking, musical instrumentation, and art. All of them were gutted, cut, or eliminated from East Oakland to the South Bronx. Why? When you take away a human's ability to express themselves a whole array of shit happens to them psychologically and culturally. Mix that with outright lies about our history and who we are, and you've got a bomb ready to explode.

Anyway, I won't go into a deep discussion about the factory of public education or how the US Government views its working class, poor, shit even some middle class people. It's a forever changing puzzle. Sometimes obvious, and completely mind boggling at others. What i will say is this. After turning down several offers to teach last year, I'm taking up my dry erase marker and hand written agenda's again. Not only that, I would like to work with some educators who are down to flip the script. Check out some of these memories from teaching the babies, mine and yours. Much respect to all the educators out there. Don't matter if you wear sneakers or a tie, you are touching someone's life when you teach what you know, and allow them to do the same to you. Love and light.

March Love and light Switches-RBG

I called this month's Light Switches"RBG", just because of the colors I felt like using on it. For folks in the U.S. and abroad, if you know of a local store that would sell hand made items like these in your city, PLEASE hit me up. My Light Switches are currently at RPS Collective (Oakland) and Art Artillery Gallery (SF).

Mar 23, 2011

Malice & Mario

wrote a short review of their EP. You should download it and take a listen.

Short Story 3

Queno was on his way to see his beloved when one of the royal guards spotted him mid flight. Being a human, Queno, put up a struggle and squirmed, but could not release himself from the grips of the mighty "Drummer".

Mar 22, 2011

Typography 8-Vinia Mojica

I once stole a photo of Vinia out of a Magazine and had my crew sign it. Here is one of my favorite of Vinia's solo jams, Guilt Junkie.Anyone who loves ATCQ, Mos, Pete Rock,Jneiro, you gotta feel me!

Mar 21, 2011

Jazz Portrait 6-Mulatu Astatke

I heard this guys name before but hadnt put two and two together until recently. This is a beautiful song by Mulatu and his Ethiopian Quintet

Mar 20, 2011

Mandela Marketplace-West Oakland

Mandela Marketplace from Storytellers For Good on Vimeo.

Incredible store, kind people, great food, super needed in the hood! I used to live 5 minutes from this store and shopped there regularly. Super grateful for their work and existence. Support if you are in the bay.

Mar 16, 2011

Character 18-The Golden Child

Wouldnt it be fresh if they did a remake of "The Golden Child"?! This is a re-design of an illustration I originally did for The Akonadi foundation poster contest.Didn't win, but will be entering again next year! Props to the winner Ernesto Yerena and to Akonadi! I wish more organizations offered contests like these. Keep pushing.Keep positivity!

Mar 8, 2011

Muphoric Sounds 14

Happy International Women's Day, another funky post from my "In The Trunk" series on Muphoric Sounds.You gotta remember this song!! It is a Bronx Classic.

Mar 7, 2011

Coup painting circa 03'

Painted this a long time ago, finally ready to let it go. One of my favorite Coup Songs The Coup at their next show, or when the next LP drops. They are one of my favorite groups of all time.

Mar 4, 2011

B/W Throwback-Lowrider Arte

So it turns out Lowrider Arte featured this one a year ago and didn't tell me. I don't think i showed many people this piece.Check it out eh and please tell LRMagazine to notify folks when they're shit is up there so we can spread the good word.