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Artist: Esk Evan Wilson, ABG Art Group
Location: Webster & 17th
Date Painted: July, 2020
Date Photographed: July, 2020
Photographer: @muralsofoakland
Description: calligraphy in a diamond inspired by “The Gates of Freedom” by Angela Davis (1972)
Notes: details and work in progress below

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“The people seized the keys which opened the gates to freedom. And we've just begun. The momentum of this movement must be sustained, and it must be increased. Let us try to seize more keys and open more gates and bring out more sisters and brothers so that they can join the ranks of our struggle out here.” Angela Davis “The Gates of Freedom” June 9, 1972 Angela Davis delivered these words almost 50 years ago. I ruminated upon their import while painting this wall, and I truly feel like they are just as relevant then as they are now. Today is America’s celebration of independence, an independence supposedly built upon the ideas of democracy and freedom. But still, people are suffering under the oppression of systemic white supremacy, a staggering class divide, and a rapidly worsening climate crisis. I don’t have much to offer besides my sincere desire to continue to educate myself and try and connect my privilege and work to a larger, progressive and positive message. But, maybe, let’s take some time and think about what Dr. Angela Davis spoke upon back in 1972. True freedom must be seized by the people, and used to free more people, so we can seize more keys towards more freedom. Manifest, build, educate, repeat. This wall means a lot. It’s been a long time coming, and a lot of growth, both creatively and personally, was required to make this happen. This is the largest calligraphy wall I have painted to date, and it truly was an honor to add this to Oakland’s downtown art zeitgeist. I want to acknowledge @abgprojects for believing in the calligraphy since Day 1 and for constantly hustling to give the Bay Area’s artists visibility. Thanks for all you do homie, glad we finally put this one down!

A post shared by Esk Evan Wilson (@evaneskwilson) on

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