Our Futures Freedom

doriana diaz

these works were created strictly with the intention of uplifting historical freedom narratives centering those who have sacrificed limbs, land, & livelihood for our people to walk this earth, we built, without fear of death, defeat or  destruction.

the white man's freedom for us has always been an illusion, something they playfully dangle in front of our eyes painted in success stories & promised to provide but never delivered. 

freedom has been something to strive for, something to sacrifice our bodies, beliefs, & blood for, but it has never been obtainable.

we have come to define our own freedom, which is not the same as the freedom the white man restricted us from ever having. 

our freedom looks like melting candle wax, the sways of hips moving to love-drenched rhythms, chanting anthems, scratched knees from jumping double-dutch on back alley sidewalks, & spreading folklore from ears to open mouths.

freedom is a friday evening block party cookout, black palms glued together in prayer in the name of our own royal kings & queens. it is grandmother's knitting on back porches with the melodies of banjos playing to lull our children into dreaming in all black.  

our freedom is crafted from martin’s chest plate rising with the duty to deliver our testimonials & malcolm’s firm knuckles that never hesitated to pound down firmly on injustice. we have never had the privilege to disappear from our  own skin or hide without chains behind our innocence.

we are tender in the name of our freedom — black is not made of metal. our freedom was built on the backbones &  spinal cords of our ancestors with blood running down their fingertips from picking cotton out of the soil our mamas’  planted for their babies to grow inside of. but instead, those babies were stolen & sold from under their breasts.

our freedom comes at a price sometimes. yet, there is nothing we are not made out of. there is nothing we cannot conquer so our children will grow up knowing we own ourselves.

our power must be protected for the preservation of our futures’ freedom. we pass down freedom to our children, just as we pass down intergenerational trauma if we are not inherently committed to the liberation of our people. we own this freedom we’ve made. we will recite the truth, we will pour from our own cups to ensure our origin stories are written  across the clouds that we put there. no one can take that away from us. 

if that’s not freedom, i don’t know what is.

doriana diaz is an independent multidimensional artist rooted in philadelphia's soulful rhythms. her words have appeared on platforms such as; nappy head club, black women radicals, GROW/N mag, allherwords, SYLA studio, we heal too, a.20 mag, and many more

her collage work entitled ‘declaration of joy in motion: friday night voodoo’ 2021 was the recipient of an open call for art in honor of the one-year anniversary of rachel cargel's loveland foundation celebration in partnership with the akron museum of art

doriana believes art has DNA. her work is an exploration of cultural agency, archival documentation, and rhythms of resistance and expansion