Lyndon Baines Johnson President of the United States on March 15,1965 in defense of the Voting Rights Act.
US Rep John Lewis (D-Georgia) in response to the Supreme Court Decision in Shelby County v Holder which effectively gutted the Voting Rights Act.
American Civics: Educating the Citizens
American Civics: Educating the Citizens is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to educating Americans as to their rights and duties as citizens of this country, while inspiring activism on issues of social justice.
Applying Dr. Howard Gardner’s theories of Multiple Intelligence, we are attempting to “educate” using art and visual media in a narrative format. Our initial focus was on specific issues of social justice including; the Voting Rights Act, Mass Incarceration, Income Inequality and Poverty, and Workers Rights and the Minimum Wage.
This resulted in the creation of a fine art series by Michael Powers in collaboration with contemporary artist Shepard Fairey entitled, American Civics: Educating the Citizens, released in May of 2016 (americancivics.com).
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the prints is being given to non-profit organizations working to address these issues of social justice. They include the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, #Cut50, an organization dedicated to addressing the issue of Mass Incarceration in this country, and the United Farm Workers Foundation, among others.
Post By: Michael Powers 6/6/2018
When I conceived American Civics: Educating the Citizens in the spring of 2015 our goal was to “educate” a generation of American citizens, who because of academic expediency, had never been instructed in their rights and duties as citizens of this Country.
My most daunting task initially was to convince artist Shepard Fairey and the estate of photographer Jim Marshall as to the merits of our project.
Marshall's black and white photos from some of the 60’s seminal events provided the perfect foundation for Shepard’s Industrial /Pop Art vision.
This collaboration resulted in the Fine Art Series: American Civics: Educating the Citizens; focusing on issues of Social Justice including the Voting Rights Act, Mass Incarceration, Income Inequality and Poverty, and Workers Rights and the Minimum Wage.
While unexpected, we are certainly pleased with the world-wide attention this project has garnered. American Civics was featured in the Power to the Truth art exhibit which ran simultaneously with the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in July of 2016.
A set of the prints from this series is now a part of the permanent collection at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington DC. There is a permanent exhibit of American Civics as part of the California State Library’s, California Civil Liberties Public Education Program. Murals of the Voting Rights Act and Workers' Rights have been installed by Shepard in August 2016 in downtown San Francisco.
Most significantly, this summer beginning in August, Shepard Fairey will be installing the Mass Incarceration image featuring Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison as a 150 ft tall mural in downtown Sacramento approximately 300 yards from the Capitol Dome..
American Civics Opening Subliminal Gallery LA 1/20/17 (Donald Trump's Inauguration Day and the day before the worldwide women's march for peace and justice).
Images photographed by: Jason Powers
Sacramento CA, 95818