Metalsmiths for Change exists to advocate for racial and social justice through collaboration and to provide equitable opportunities for Black artists.
From the Archives
This is a collection of collaborative works from previous fundraisers. Artists play an integral part of making Metalsmiths for Change advocacy efforts successful by dedicating their time and materials towards creating these pieces.
These works of art are made to help continue conversations and positive change for the Black community.
Say Their Names
For our first series of auctions, we turned our attention to focus on Black lives lost to police brutality. We hope that by crafting these pieces, we spread much needed awareness to address police brutality, racial disparities and impunity in American policing.
Black + Trans
Individuals in the LGBTQ community are three times more likely to be jailed. That number is even higher for people who identify as Black and trans.
For far too long, Black women have been pushed from the headlines, ignored, and mistreated. We acknowledged women, such as Mary Jane Richards, who worked with a spy ring run by abolitionist Elizabeth "Bet" Van Lew. Her photographic memory helped to gather intel from documentations and conversations available within the Confederate White House. Pretty badass, right?
The Big 6
The "Big Six" includes organizer Asa Philip Randolph, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., James Farmer Jr., John Lewis, the Whitney Young, Jr.; and Roy Wilkins. Less mentioned major contributors include Anna Arnold Hedgeman and Dorothy Height. This group of activists led the March on Washinton in 1963.
During a tragic act of hate, nine individuals lost their lives on June 17, 2015, with five who managed to escape. We honor the lives lost and stand in solidarity with the Emanuel Nine Foundation to work to reverse racism.Reverend Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, Mrs. Cynthia Graham Hurd, Mrs. Susie J. Jackson, Mrs. Ethel Lee Lance, Reverend DePayne Middleton-Doctor, Reverend Clementa Pinckney, Tywanza Kibwe Diop Sanders, Reverend Daniel Lee Simmons, Sr., and Mrs. Myra Singleton Quarles Thompson.
Since its existence, Metalsmiths for Change has raised over $100,000 for organizations and people fighting for racial and social justice for Black communities in the United States.
Metalsmiths for Change was created overnight, yet has always been a dream; a dream to see the masses acknowledging and taking action against the bias and racism aimed at the Black community. I want to sincerely thank the artists who dedicated time and materials to recognize and honor the precious Black lives lost to police brutality. The initiative it took to kick off the first set of Solidarity auctions in such a short time frame was remarkable, and I couldn't be more proud of these artists for joining forces to help benefit the Black community. The power of a creative collective is nothing less than extraordinary!
This work is not over, however. We deserve to see justice and peace, and with your support, we can turn another dream into reality. We are so much stronger together. Thank you for being here.
I founded Metalsmiths for Change in June of 2020 after seeing an opportunity for positive change to happen for Black communities in America and after learning that artists were looking to stand in solidarity in a significant way.
On June 1, 2020, I released my BLM Solidarity Pins and received an overwhelming amount of support as it aligned with what I call the Great Awakening of 2020. Police brutality was yet again brought to a forefront for non-Black people and introspection became a thing for many. A handful of metalsmiths reached out to offer help get my orders out. I had over 300 orders!
While I could have used all the help I could get, I felt those energies were best served doing something to continue supporting Black communities and advocating for positive change, so Metalsmiths for Change was born. For our first fundraiser, over 100 metalsmiths came together and created personalized pieces to honor Black lives that were lost to police brutality from 2019 and 2020. We raised over $20,000 for charity, and it was proof that we are stronger together.