Commitment to Community: Supporting Black artists
The idea for BLK ROSE came in June 2020 when like many other people I grew incredibly frustrated with the world that we live in and like many, grappled with how I could do my part.
Yes, BLK ROSE makes candles, but my goal is to use the little community I create around candles to spark conversations, challenge thinking and play my part in creating a better future.
Even though BLK ROSE has only been live for less than a month, I wanted to demonstrate my commitment and be transparent about my community involvement. We’ll be making these donations quarterly, as long as we keep selling candles, so stay tuned for our next donation!
My inaugural donation was made to the Nia Centre for the Arts. Based in Toronto, Canada, the Nia Centre for the Arts is Canada’s first professional multi-disciplinary centre for African-Canadian art. Focused on creating spaces for Black Art and supporting emerging artists, the centre is creating opportunities for representation and access in the arts for African-Canadian artists.
The arts are so important and a way to tell stories, bring people together, highlight social issues - the list goes on and on. With that being said, systemic racism continues to impact Black artists (and most diverse artists for that matter). Cost-prohibitive museums, limited safe spaces for artists to create and showcase their works, this list goes on and on as well! There also lacks diversity among patrons and art critics. This lack of diversity results in Black art being undervalued, misrepresented or underrepresented. The significance and impact of a Black artists' work is often underestimated because a non-Black art critic is an outsider to Black culture.
This impacts all BIPOC artists in some way. Art is universal and so should access and opportunity.
The work that the Nia Centre for the Arts and so many organizations are doing is helping to remove these challenges to create a world where the work of all artists are properly represented and valued fairly and equitably.
I hope this gave you a little to think about and reflect on the next time you are engaging with the arts.