The arts community does some incredible works outside of and alongside its artistic day job. One of the most striking this year has been 100 Stories for Haiti. Not to mention the thousands of community-based arts projects that transform lives on a daily basis. It would be a nonsense not to to recognise one of these endeavours in this shortlist.
I have chosen Hip Hop Gives Back , which I first got to know through twitter, for the breadth and energy of its work, for the passion of its work, and for its incredible, exhilarating mission statment which embodies so many things that matter to us here at eight cuts gallery, and so many of the things that drove Chris’ work. Here is a sample from that inspiring statement:
“Everyday in our communities we come across situations that require change, action and/or improvement. If each one of us brought into the concept of helping each other, we would indeed be a stronger society? Yes? That is fact.
The purpose of this site…this MOVEMENT is to motivate that change, to aspire greatness…to showcase what you don’t know because it’s never talked about. The purpose of this site is to achieve those things within ourselves and for ourselves that we’ve for too long waited for someone else to do.
This is EMPOWERMENT…this is CHANGE…this is US.”
Hip Hop Gives Back is more than just a single entity, it is an umbrella for many artists working separately for the same goal. You can get an idea of the diversity and reach of the projects it embraces here.