Imagine a World Free of Bars and Borders

October 7, 2015

CONTACT: Jessica Cook, jessica [at]
Communications Manager, CultureStrike

Immigrant Rights Organizations and Artists Launch Cultural Project that Imagines a World Free of Bars and Borders
Creative action at detention center brings together community organizations and artists to build solidarity with the movement for Black lives, and propose alternatives to mass incarceration, detention, and deportation

Action Date: October 14, 2015 1:30 - 3:00 pm at Glenn Dyer Detention Facility, Oakland

Image Credit, from left to right: Artworks by Crystal Clarity, Jess X. Chen, and Favianna Rodriguez (2015)

OAKLAND, CA - CultureStrike - a national pro-migrant arts organization - and Mobilize the Immigrant Vote - a statewide immigrant and refugee rights alliance - are launching Until We are All Free, a cultural initiative led by artists, culture workers, and organizers to respond to the criminalization of migrants and communities of color, and envision a world beyond borders and bars. Press are invited to an art build day on October 13th from 4:00-6:00pm at the GreenPeace Warehouse, 955 7th Street, West Oakland. The art build is an opportunity for organizers and artists to share stories and create art that reflects the Until We Are All Free vision. The art will be used at the detention center action on October 14th at 1:30-3:00pm, at the Glenn Dyer Detention Facility, 550 6th St, Oakland, CA 94607. 

Until We Are All Free is an unprecedented collaboration between migrant and refugee rights organizations, Black-led organizations and leaders, and artists - working across sectors - to inspire the public through art and cultural practice to imagine, and take action toward, a future of universal dignity and self-determination. To date over 70 community organizations and thought leaders including Alicia Garza (Black Lives Matter co-founder), Angelica Salas (CHIRLA), Ai-jen Poo (National Domestic Workers Alliance), Van Jones (activist), and Jeff Chang (author) have signed on in support of Until We Are All Free as it unfolds.

During the October 14th art build community leaders, and award-winning artists, including NoViolet Bulawayo, Favianna Rodriguez, and Francis Wong, are creating literary, visual, and musical works that illustrate the possibilities for creating a society where all families and communities are whole and strong. A day later, community members and activists including Eddy Zheng will join together at the detention center action. 

We are in a precious political moment: in the midst of the national, post-Ferguson conversation about anti-Black racism, and immigration enforcement high on the docket of political campaigns nationally and internationally. Over 200 Black people have been killed by law enforcement in the last 6 months and 1,100 migrants are deported every day. Black leaders and liberation movements have long called for the immigrant rights sector to boldly address racial justice and show up for Black lives. 

The path to safety and security for our country and our world is not through prison and deportation. This is a call to divest from prisons and invest in building strong communities with education, jobs, housing, healthcare, and access to the arts and outdoors. Join us in leading the way with culture to manifest a society where all are visible, valued, and free.

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CultureStrike is a national organization that empowers artists and social justice movements to dream big, disrupt the status quo, transform public opinion on migration, and envision a truly just world rooted in shared humanity through art. We believe cultural work is key to creating systemic change.

Mobilize the Immigrant Vote (MIV) is a statewide multiracial California alliance that advances the broader movement for social change by building the voting power of New American immigrant and refugee communities of color.