How to understand Black art across the diaspora

With the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade and more, our thoughts are with the people and communities closest to them and others whose names are unknown. Please take steps to protect your mental health as the current news can be overwhelming, triggering and exhausting.  Our thoughts and prayers are with our Black community globally as this movement for justice, anti-racism, and structural reform is underway. 

Combined with the disproportionate effect of COVID-19 on Black communities and the sexual and gender-based violence against Uwavera Omozuwa, Tina Ezekwe and more in Nigeria, we are filled with mourning at the realities faced by our global community. We support protestors and organizers at the frontlines of these movements for justice across our Diaspora. 

We stand in solidarity with Black Women, the Black Queer community, Black People with Disabilities and the many Black identites that are left out of these conversations. Pro-Blackness is to fight for ALL Black people. 

As people either in or interested the art world, it is important to critique the institutions and professionals that profit from Black artists, works and cultures. Take this time to notice if they are genuinely vocal, if they are supportive by redistributing wealth or if they are complicit in institutional anti-Blackness. The art world is not exempt from anti-Black policies and attitudes.

ISE-DA has been and will always be dedicated to supporting Black communities across the Diaspora. We remain committed to our mission to cultivate, educate and reimagine an art ecosystem that benefits and promotes the creativity, interests, and progression of Black people. 

- The ISE-DA Team

Donate to our Protest Kit Fund 

With protests reaching the 12th day, ISE-DA has teamed up with individuals based in Atlanta to create kits for those who protest and stand in solidarity with Black communities. We will be collecting funds via our cashtag on Cashapp ($ISEDACO). 

Each kit includes:

Hand Sanitizer
Eye Protection

*All extra funds will be going towards Atlanta-Based grassroots organizations. 


COVID-19 Resources

Supporting those in need. 

As more data about the effects of COVID-19 on global communities are being released, it is clear that Black communities are disproportionately affected. This is caused by centuries of structural injustices through systemic environmental racism, lack of access to employment healthcare and multiple other factors. Even during this pandemic, Black communities globally have not been provided with the necessary care and attention.

Artistic communities have additionally suffered through reductions in freelancing, gigs that supported their artistry and lack of resources. With multiple galleries turning to online-solutions, unfortunately there are cultural workers who have lost their source of income.

With social distancing in place, it is easy to feel helpless as direct, hands-on assistance is difficult to provide. We understand and feel this too. The ISE-DA team has been compiling a list of relief efforts that help Black communities and artistic communities globally. This is a growing list that we will be updating as we find new avenues to support affected communities. If you are able to, please support/share where you can. 

If there are any other known ways to support, please contact the ISE-DA team so we can update the list.

Resources to apply to or to donate to:

  • Ghana Against COVID-19
    Organized in the United Kingdom to contribute towards providing healthcare workers(Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital) with the right equipment needed to battle to COVID19 pandemic in Ghana.  
  • ILYSM Grants 
    This grant gives $500 to an artist in need on a weekly basis. 
  • National Bail Out
    The U.S based organization is raising funds to bail out Black mothers and care-givers in time for Mother’s Day.
  • Nigerian Residents in Need
    A group of volunteers based in Nigeria are delivering supplies to those in need. You can either volutneer to deliver or request support at this website. 
  • NYFA Emergency Grants
    New York Foundation of the Arts has also compiled a list of resources for artists within the United States to receive support and apply for grants.
  • Queers Writers of Color Relief Fund
    A GoFundMe to support at least 100 queer writers of color. At this link you are able to apply for support or donate to support queer writers. 
  • Seattle Artist Relief Fund
    A fund in partnership with Langston that directly support the Seattle Arts community. 
  • Sister Outsider Relief Grant
    The Free Black Women’s Library is offering one-time cash grants via Venmo or CashApp to 5+ Black single mother artists/cultural workers/writers. 
  • UndocuBlack Network
    UndocuBlack is gathering donations to provide undocumented Black Immigrants with the right resources and access to information during the COVID-19 crisis. 
  • Your Friends in New York
    This Business Relief Fund by Pyer Moss provides temporary relief for creatives businesses operated and owned by women and those from marginalized communities.

Supporting Sexual Assualt Survivors in Nigeria 

Resources to support and donate to:

  • Stand to End Rape Initiative
    A youth-led social enterprise supporting survivors with psychosocial services and advocating agaisnt sexual violence.  
  • Mirabel Centre
    A project of Partnership for Justice where rape and sexual assault survivors can access free forensic medical & counseling services.
  • WELA Nigeria
    A Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre (WARDC) is a non-profit women’s civil rights organisation established in the year 2000 to promote respect for Human Rights, Gender Equality, Equity, Rule of Law, Accountability and Social Justice in Nigeria.