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The artwork expresses the prison population in the United States. For every one White person there are five African Americans and for every one White person there are two Hispanics. The background is red representing the blood of the captives living in cages, who have historically been brutalized by correction officers. The bars are gold representing prisons are big business.
Wanda Best, MA, MPA, Artist Ms. Best believes Art is a way to interpret the world. Through art she communicates social injustices that plague communities of color. Art is a non-threatening way to express the traumatizing pain of poverty, hyper-incarceration, environmental racism and other social ills that are present in urban areas. Growing up in Harlem during the 1960's she experienced poverty first hand and felt its traumatic impact. She also saw the beauty of people who made something out of nothing and the innocent happiness of families who were bond together simply by love. Her paintings are from imagination or memory. Each painting is inspired by an event or an emotional experience. She not only captures the images with her brushes and colorful strokes, she educates the viewer with her conceptualized paintings. She is CEO and Founder of “Art Transforms, Inc.” Her mission is to offer art appreciation to the community to distract from the crime generative factors that can lead to criminal justice involvement, while building character and self-esteem. She teaches visual art at Rochdale Village Community Complex. Participants are exposed to art education, technique development and a workshop on the profitable artist/entrepreneur. She organizes Social Justice art exhibits as a way of educating the community. www.arttransforms.org