Trash Academy

I was commissioned for a 2nd time by Philly Mural Arts program Trash Academy to teach art and collaborate with 8 youth on two summer projects: designing wraps to be installed on ‘Big Belly’ trash compactors, and to create short educational videos exploring waste management in the city.
For the first two weeks I taught color theory, best practices for creative drawing, painting and collaging; and worked closely with students to design their own images. My students decided what was missing from city streets was bright colors and nature, so they chose animals as a theme and named the project Dirty Danger. My role was to guide the process, keep the students’ work cohesive as a whole, and to move them through the numerous Mural Arts design reviews. My final role was to carefully recreated each painting as a digital drawing ready for high resolution printing at 152 x 50 inches. These designs can be found on 50 trash compactors on the Broad Street and 52nd Street economic corridors in South and West Philly, respectfully. 

original artwork "Colorful Animals" by Savion Love and Damon Perry Jr.

original artwork "Colorful Animals" by Savion Love and Damon Perry Jr.

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For the final 4 weeks of the summer program I taught an introductory filmmaking course which would answer two main questions: What happens when I recycle something? and What happens when I throw something away? The curriculum was developed by filmmaker Hilary Brashear (as the editor), program coordinator Ciara Williams (as the producer), and myself (as the teaching artist). We caught footage at during field trips, conducted professional interviews, and developed art/poetry/graphics. Below are some of the final products:

40th St AIR

40th St. AIR (Artist-In-Residence), locally known as AIR Space, is a residency program for emerging West Philly artists which provides a free studio, a shared gallery space, stipend and related opportunities to around 6 artists each year for a full year. In return for the resource, artists are required to put at least 40 hours toward a community project during their time in the studios. The application is usually posted in April and due in late May. 

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During my 2016-2017 residency I used my studio to do photo and video shoots, prepare for shows, and meet with friends. I also got more familiar with the work of the other studio artists, particularly Wit López, Andra Palchick, and Juliannah Francina Harrison. It took around 6 month to prepare for my first-ever solo show at the AIR Gallery with photos, videos, gifs, and 3D collage shrines. I wanted to show so much work I almost ran out of space in the small gallery! The opening was featured in Philadelphia Magazine under 12 Things to Do This Week in Lit, Comedy, Art, Theater, Movies and Murder and 37 Things to Do This Weekend

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For my community project, I provided free headshots to over 50 people - medical students, actors, entrepreneurs, promotors, clothing designers, etc. My post on the 40th St. AIR facebook page ended up going viral and I had to turn some people down because of the huge influx of requests I got. 

Here are some of the headshots I took in my studio: 

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