ARTECHOUSE has just announced a very cool project with Afrosurrealist artist Vince Fraser; We Rise Above is an augmented reality experience that’s happening in Black Lives Matter Plazas across the United States to commemorate the 57th anniversary of the March on Washington this Friday, August 28th.
The experience will offer people across North America an innovative way to experience these spaces, allowing them to create virtual Black Lives Matter experiences wherever they are. The project aims to both uplift and educate, as well as empower and amplify the presence of Black artists working at the intersection of art and technology.
“We Rise Above aims to inform the public of structural racial and societal norms, all while still critiquing these structures that are imposed on them,” says Vince Fraser. “This project merges the real and virtual worlds to find new ways of sharing the experiences that are universally affecting Black livelihood. The fact that anyone, at any time, anywhere in the country can interact with the art gives me great hope at this time.”
Here are his descriptions of each component:
“Reflect” – a tribute to show gratitude, respect, and admiration for George Floyd. The experience includes music by Lloyd James (AKA King Jammy), with lyrics and vocals by the Reverend Al Sharpton (courtesy of Jam One Publishing VP Records USA).
“I wanted to recreate him [George Floyd] as a figure of positivity almost like a black king showing a new perspective on how black people are seen now and can be seen in the future. As a Black artist, it’s important for me to document this historical moment, because we live and experience this on a daily basis. These incidents are happening worldwide,not just in the U.S.; it’s a global problem.”
“Inspire” – an exploration of traditional African Masks and their symbolic importance, featuring music by NaNaBcool, written by Gabe Fox-Peck and Nana Boamah-Acheampong.
“A lot of my work tends to draw inspiration from masks, whether it be something I’ve heard or read, and most of the stories go unnoticed or unheard in general Western culture. I think it’s important to highlight these stories in a positive light as opposed to past negative connotations.”
“Empower” – a symbol of the fight and the importance of pushing diversity and inclusivity to spark the change. The music is by Djembe Monks, Thando, DJ Vs Djembe Monks, Thando, and DJ Vs.
“Being an artist has given me the platform to be able to visually speak about important topics affected by the black community. We are working for a world where Black lives are no longer systematically targeted for demise. Our message is clear: Increase racial harmony and deter police brutality and systematic racism.”
Through the ARTECHOUSE extended reality (XR) mobile app, audiences can experience Fraser’s visual art rise above the Black Lives Matter Plazas as a special preview across the 34 Black Lives Matter Plaza locations on August 24th, and nationwide on the 28th.
Join the Experience:
Download the ARTECHOUSE mobile app for free from the App store or Google play
The app experience will debut on August 24th, across these 34 locations. It will become available worldwide on the 28th.
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More information here