What Matters: Creativity Scholars on Race and Identity

From Buenos Aires to Bangalore the 2016 Adobe Creativity Scholars express how to better serve our planet and humanity. For the past five weeks, these creatives have shared their perspectives related to various themes. Recently, the importance of mental health and belonging were brought to light. Today, Creativity Scholars use video, illustration and painting to spotlight issues related to race. They confront the epidemic that has spurred the #BlackLivesMatter movement and contemplate the beauty and disappearance of the rituals of indigenous Native Americans.

kayla smoke cover

Kayla Briët, 19
Cypress, California, USA 

There’s a story behind the world, how many are fighting and fought and shed blood over the history of power and equality or corruption. We must understand it to move forward.” Kayla narrates her film, Smoke That Travels, which she also scored and directed. Kayla’s words soundtrack her father Gary Wis-ki-ge-amatyuk dancing with multiple rings encircling him. His dance and Kayla’s reverence are emblematic of their Native American Prairie Band Potawatomi culture and identity. In unison, they encourage us to remember our history, where we come from, and to ask ourselves what happens when a culture and its stories are forgotten.

bedelyn portrait

Bedelyn Dabel, 19
Lynn, Massachusetts, USA

To reflect upon the senseless loss of those victimized by police brutality, Bedelyn created a series of portraits, entitled Black Lives Matter, to memorialize the lives that were inexplicably cut short. “I started a series to honor the victims of police brutality so that they would not be forgotten and would not become old news.” Recently, Bedelyn painted Enough is Enough to commemorate the death of Alton Sterling. This piece channels the profound grief experienced by Alton’s wife and son. “There have been many cases of police brutality but you never see the sons and daughters of the victims feeling the weight of such a crippling loss.”

Lead image by Bedelyn Dabel