Trayvon Martin murder changed artist Michael D’Antuono. The New York artist expressed his anguish in A Tale of Two Hoodies (image below), which he tried to auction on eBay with 50% of the proceeds benefiting the Trayvon Martin Foundation.
On the same day that Martin’s killer sold an American flag painting on eBay for $100,000, the online auction site REMOVED D’Antuono’s painting saying it violated their policies.
The artist-activist is daring eBay to do it again. D’Antuono is auctioning his iconic It Stops with Cops here on eBay (right now it has 20 bids and is at $20,000) He is donating 25% each to Black Lives Matter, the NAACP and the Equal Justice Initiative.
The painting is featured in D’Antuono’s 2016 short film BLACK INjustice AMERICA, and went viral when the artist provided posters to protesters in New York, Chicago and Baltimore, and again following the death of George Floyd.
PROHBTD interviewed D’Antuono and he had this to say;
“When the Trayvon Martin tragedy happened, it took me out of my comfortable ignorance. I had to ask myself,
Is this country I live in actually racist?’
With the cover up and all the other incidents, I figured it out pretty quickly. Yes, there are two different Americas, two sets of justice. One justice and one injustice, depending solely on the color of your skin. It shocked the hell out of me. That’s why I did A Tale of Two Hoodies to show the underlying racism that never went away.
The second painting was maybe three years later, and it’s about empathy. I thought, ‘
What if I had to sit my son down and say, ‘You can’t go out there wearing a hoodie. You have to have your hands where people can see them. You can’t talk back to the police like your white friends do.’
You have to explain to your kids that they’re seen as less, as different, as a danger. Why? Because of the color of their skin. I wouldn’t want to have to explain that to my kid.