Print #1: "Where there is struggle..."
Artist's statement for "Where there is struggle..."
Title: “Where there is struggle…”
Medium: Original linocut print, ink on paper, 8 x 10 inches
Artist: Annie Banks
Date: September 2017
This linocut was inspired by a conversation with my pen pal, political prisoner David Gilbert. David is currently incarcerated at the Wende Correctional Facility in upstate New York and I visited him in early September 2017. We talked about movement morale and how one maintains any hope in political times like the ones that we are currently in. David said to me, “Well, where there is struggle, there is hope” and his words resonated so deeply with me that I knew this phrase would be part of my first linocut of the series that I am making for my final project.
In doing some research on the phrase, it seems a common saying among activists and organizers, as well as having seemingly originated early on from a similar saying by Frederick Douglass. In his 1857 West India Emancipation address, he started it by saying, “If there is no struggle, there is no progress” (Douglass, 1857).
Douglass, F. (1857). West India emancipation. [Speech]. From: http://www.blackpast.org/1857-frederick-douglass-if-there-no-struggle-there-no-progress)
Gilbert, D. (2017, September 1). Personal communication.