I Was Here is a 501(c)(3) and public art project that both creates memorials to those who were sold into slavery as it creates a path beyond 'who we were' into a vision of 'who we could be' as fellow citizens. We work closely with communities to create ‘on the street’ museums that utilize the power of art to allow us to see each other as powerful components of a shared humanity.
I Was Here: Making the Project
Cheapside- lexington, KY
Videos of I Was Here installations at Cheapside. Cheapside was one of the largest auction sites for the sale of enslaved persons in the United States.
Although this project launches in Kentucky, the repercussions from slavery are not merely a 'southern issue'. It is a national wound that we, as fellow Americans, must heal. Central to the project is a blessing that augments the visual imagery. There is a prayer spoken at the epicenter of each site to sanctify the space.
This installation occurs in a rural community that received significant economic benefit through the business of enslavement. The collaged portraits form cohesive, ethereal images that convey the dignity of the African-American subject and family – two great casualties of slavery and things much at a loss in this country’s visual history.