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Nancy Rubins

Usher, Jim Carrey, Bruno Mars, Marilyn Minter, and David Hockney are among the more than 100 creative stars who have made artworks in memory of Black women killed by the police. The works will appear in “Show Me the Signs,” an exhibition and auction benefiting the womens’ families.

The proceeds of the sale will go to the #SayHerName Mothers Network, run by the African American Policy Forum.

“Black women and girls do not fit the most accessible frames of anti-Black police violence, and because of that, it’s difficult to tell their stories in a way that people recognize and remember,” said #SayHerName founder Kimberlé Crenshaw in a statement. “By working with the families of slain Black women, AAPF’s #SayHerName campaign resists Black women’s invisibility by telling their stories.”

Participants were asked to make work in the spirit of solidarity and empowering love, and the results vary widely. Starting bids range from just $1—for the Haas Brothers’ cardboard sign that encourages bidders to “do more than bidding on a sign”—to up to $20,000 for works by Rashid Johnson and Nancy Rubins.

Camille Henrot offers Breonna Taylor, a bird painted on a wood panel that pays tribute to the late EMS technician who police shot and killed while she was asleep in bed, from a starting bid of $15,000. Kenny Scharf’s piece Truck Fump!, a colorful acrylic on cardboard painting featuring the work’s title uttered in agreement by the silhouettes of Betty and Wilma from The Flintstones, starts at $5,250.

Auctioning from just $100 are an acrylic canvas of the American flagby Lenny Kravitz; Billie Eilish’s hand-scrawled “Stop Killing Black People” sign, written in black marker on an uneven cardboard square; and Cardi B’s sign listing the names of Black victims of police violence including Tamir Rice, Atatiana Jefferson, Sandra Bland, Sean Bell, and George Floyd.

The works are available online at Artfizz, a new community-driven contemporary art marketplace that is hosting the sale ahead of its official launch. Following a preview that begins today, the auction will take place in two parts, from November 10 to 19 and then November 21 to 30, with an in-person exhibition of the signs at Blum and Poe in Los Angeles through November 14.

“We thank all of the participating artists who have shared their creative vision to stand for love and equal justice, and to support this important cause,” said benefit committee member Amanda Hunt, director of public programs at Los Angeles’s Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, in a statement. “‘Show Me the Signs’ brings the creative community together with a larger collective to protest police violence against Black women, support the families already impacted, and promote a better future for all.”

See more artworks from the auction below.


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