Survive Under Capitalism
An interview with an artist.
We were blessed enough to get an honest, straight forward interview from Ekow Stone. The outspoken, creative genius told us about his artistic past, present and future and explained why "reaching" as many people as possible is so important to him. Check it out!
WHEN DID YOU REALIZE ART WAS BECOMING A STAPLE IN YOUR LIFE?
Before school came about as the main place of learning, my mother was my sole teacher. She didn't draw the distinction between creativity and other so called "non-creative" things. So art has and will always be a staple.
HOW HAS DEVELOPING YOUR ART HELPED YOU IN OTHER ASPECTS OF YOUR DAY TO DAY GRIND?
Art, for me, is sacred labour. It's work of any kind that aligns with your essence as human being, that gives you life, and leaves you feeling elated and transformed every time you engage with it. So Art is my true life, and the "grind" is just a nigga tryna survive under capitalism. I work and sell my labour in the market place because I have no choice, it's how you get food, shelter, etc. Art helps with the "grind" in that it gives me reason worth "grinding" in the first place. If there was no art, I would just peace out foreal.
How would you describe your style?
Self expression and chanelling ancestral narratives with dots.
What/Who inspires you to create the way you do?
My family, my mother, my friends, my community, blackness, Africa, me, lovers, crushes, Basquiat, Prince, Rumi, Nina Simone, trees, flowers, God, I can go on forever.
Why do you think you were drawn to art in the first place?
I believe people are drawn away from art. My mother just had the insight to keep her boy in close proximity to art at all times, so here I am, an artist.
What role, if any, do you feel your art has in society?
To tell The Truth.
What are your hopes for your art in the future?
To reach as many people as possible. And when I say "reach" I don't mean in the form of a commodity that someone thinks is cool one day and discards the next for whatever cool shit the next nigga is doing. (This has happened to so many legends like Basquiat where his iconic crown is reduced to a hollow brand to be put on sweatshop textiles) I mean "reach" as in to take hold of someone, to really connect with their spirit, to spur a revolution within.
Tell us one random fact about yourself.
I once convinced everyone in my grade in elementary school that I was possessed by spirits/ghosts/demons for a week by reading graffiti as if it were some long lost ancient language.