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Artist Receives Backlash for “I Hate White People But I Loves You” Exhibit

Avatar • Sep 9, 2015

When San Francisco Art Institute student Kezia Harrell decided to do an art exhibit centered on the fraught relationship between black identity and white American culture she knew it might be controversial, but she wasn’t prepared for what followed. The art gallery where she was to show the work gave her an ultimatum of changing the name or finding another venue, and the story eventually made it onto local news.

Through it all Harrell remained resolute, telling reporters, “While you love your own blackness in a way you also desire whiteness. It’s kinda a psychological theme. I’m not exactly saying I hate white people. It’s deeper than that.”

We’ll be talking to Harrell tomorrow about her exhibit, but for now check out the story:

Ladies, what are your thoughts?

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cryssi
cryssi
5 years ago

Well…at first I was like whoa you’re saying what some of us think behind closed doors out loud! Gutsy…

But then I saw what she meant by it and I approve. Yes it’s blatant and in your face, but so are the things she’s trying to make society aware of.

Thill
Thill
5 years ago

Oh I get it! Creative as art yet there is some truth to the motive of the theme.

Yui
Yui
5 years ago

I don’t get why ‘I hate white people’ has to be in the title. I am Jamaican but I get the struggle of not wanting to put premium on whiteness and its characteristics as being better. The title has shock value and it gains attention, but it is unnecessarily divisive. I think Marcus Garvey said it best, ”Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds”. No matter what’s out there in terms of the messages we receive about the black identity, we have to value ourselves and send counter messages.

Pamela Blackwell
Pamela Blackwell
5 years ago

I love her and I love her stance and her art work is beautiful ! it is a form of expression i think that makes America what we are and that is free with the freedom of speech at our finger tips…i do not believe that she is trying to hurt or proclaim that she hates Caucasian people. After watching the video her demeanor just does not shout i hate white people. Truly people just have a problem with people who say what they mean and refuse to apologize for what they have said. Thank God that Great men and… Read more »

Elle P.
Elle P.
5 years ago

Very interesting! I don’t really think she is literal with the title. I think it may have many different contexts…

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