DJ Riz on The Lost Boys

DJ Riz on The Lost Boys

DJ Riz on The Lost Boys (A.K.A. Untitled)

Listen to DJ Riz discuss how Kerry James Marshall's The Lost Boys (A.K.A. Untitled) connects to themes of the Figuring History exhibition.

DJ Riz on The Lost Boys

DJ Riz on The Lost Boys

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LOW/NO VISION

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Transcript

I am Riz Rollins, otherwise known as Reverend Dr. DJ Riz otherwise known as DJ Riz otherwise known as my favorite is just Riz.

I chose this painting because it was reminiscent to me of Ethiopian icons, which are completely different than any other icons because they're Afrocentric. They retained the same elements of icons, particularly the halo, writ in gold, and the eyes are almost always deeply emotional, a transcendent sadness.

In this day and age, the sadness just makes so much sense. I mean, you hear this phrase, resting bitch face, this is resting sad face, and you see resting sad face much more often than you see resting bitch face. There's a sense of overwhelm.

And if you are prescient, which I think this individual is prescient, which means he has a sense of something deeper, then what he is not seeing is the joy and the light behind him. In this day and age, I think with so much input, it is hard, I think joy is kind of a lost concept.

The ghosts in the background are connected to his memory. Perhaps the ghosts are connected to his future, hence the halo. And Kerry James Marshall was born just a year after me. He has enough foresight to see that the heavens are crowded with ghosts. I think that's where those eyes come from.

I'm a creature of hope. This makes me think of that song, Wholy, holy, by Aretha Franklin. Music to me is multifaceted, is many human emotions and feelings. Music is a meditation, and it's also a sword. This is more meditative to me, but it also conjures up things in the viewer that may empower them with swords, with a sense of connective justice. I want to put those ghosts to rest and music helps me make people connect to, to transcendent spirits. That's what I use it for. I'm not just trying to make people dance or think. I want connections to be made. This is very connected.

LOW/NO VISION TRANSCRIPT

You are listening to a verbal description of the artwork intended for someone with low to no vision.

The Lost Boys (A.K.A. Untitled), painted in 1993 by Kerry James Marshall. Collage of acrylic on paper. About 2 feet and 4 inches tall by 2 and a half feet wide.

This is a painting of the bust of a young black boy, surrounded by white roses scattered across the blue background around his head. The boy's face is at the center of the picture. The boy's face is painted with flat black paint, contrasting with the whites of his heavy-lidded dark brown eyes and the faint grey lines that form the contours of his nose, full closed lips, hairline to his short hair, and ears and chin. He faces and looks straight at the viewer. Alternating shorter and longer lines of gold paint encircle his head and echo the yellow tone of his cream buttoned collar shirt, which has "1988-1996" written faintly in large handwriting across his chest. A block of tan paint covers the bottom quarter of the canvas in the background behind the boy's shoulders. The rest of the background is blue, with outlines of repeating roses. Some of the white paint from the roses drips downward, one does so down the top right of the boy's forehead, and the roses vary in being filled with light blue or pink paint.

Now, here's an interpretive analysis of this artwork.

I am Riz Rollins, otherwise known as Reverend Dr. DJ Riz otherwise known as DJ Riz otherwise known as my favorite is just Riz.

I chose this painting because it was reminiscent to me of Ethiopian icons, which are completely different than any other icons because they're Afrocentric. They retained the same elements of icons, particularly the halo, writ in gold, and the eyes are almost always deeply emotional, a transcendent sadness.

In this day and age, the sadness just makes so much sense. I mean, you hear this phrase, resting bitch face, this is resting sad face, and you see resting sad face much more often than you see resting bitch face. There's a sense of overwhelm.

And if you are prescient, which I think this individual is prescient, which means he has a sense of something deeper, then what he is not seeing is the joy and the light behind him. In this day and age, I think with so much input, it is hard, I think joy is kind of a lost concept.

The ghosts in the background are connected to his memory. Perhaps the ghosts are connected to his future, hence the halo. And Kerry James Marshall was born just a year after me. He has enough foresight to see that the heavens are crowded with ghosts. I think that's where those eyes come from.

I'm a creature of hope. This makes me think of that song, Wholy, holy, by Aretha Franklin. Music to me is multifaceted, is many human emotions and feelings. Music is a meditation, and it's also a sword. This is more meditative to me, but it also conjures up things in the viewer that may empower them with swords, with a sense of connective justice. I want to put those ghosts to rest and music helps me make people connect to, to transcendent spirits. That's what I use it for. I'm not just trying to make people dance or think. I want connections to be made. This is very connected.