The Militant (logo)  

Vol. 78/No. 22      June 9, 2014

Atlanta students comment
on Guerrero’s prison paintings
(feature article)
ATLANTA — “This has to be one of the most silent, profound things to take place on this campus. I stood there and read every word on that wall,” wrote Spelman College senior Kaneisha Montague, commenting on Antonio Guerrero’s paintings. “Whoever is responsible for this genuine idea to instill history, art and knowledge into the people who walk the halls of Cosby should be praised. Please continue to do this. I’d also love to get involved.”

The exhibit of Guerrero’s 15 watercolors titled “I Will Die the Way I’ve Lived” was displayed in Cosby Hall at Spelman College, a historically Black women’s college, for two months — twice as long as had been originally planned. English professor Alma Jean encouraged viewers to leave comments in a book set up at the exhibit.

“Truly enjoyed the exhibit and the insight into prison life,” wrote Mattie Taylor, an accountant who visited the college to view the paintings with her cousin. “Very first time hearing of the Cuban Five. Will continue to follow case.”

Both Montague and Taylor bought books on the campaign to free the Five, including Voices From Prison: The Cuban Five and I Will Die the Way I’ve Lived, and said they will follow developments in the fight through the pages of the Militant.

“Guerrero was reduced to a color and a number,” wrote one student about one of the paintings entitled “Number!” which she said, “Speaks to the dehumanizing effects of the prison system.”

Another student commented on the painting entitled “Fishing,” which depicts how prisoners exchange magazines and many other items: “This piece involves a sense of community within the prison.”

“It’s sad that those who stand for what’s right are punished,” wrote another student, commenting on “The Little Ball.” It shows, she wrote, that “proper health care was not allotted to the prisoners and how innocent people endure the worst conditions.”

“The Night Watch” caught the attention of another student who wrote, “It shows the lack of privacy and control. The eyes represent the lack of privacy and the constant supervision that the prisoners have to deal with in the ‘hole.’”

Another student wrote, “Their confinement in prison was a mechanism to oppress the ideologies of the Cuban Five but their creativity while imprisoned is represented” by the watercolors.
Related articles:
Miners community center hosts event to free Cuban 5:
‘Five are fighting for us, we need to fight for them’
‘Cuban 5, like Cuban Revolution, stay solid’
Who are the Cuban Five?
Exhibits of paintings by Antonio Guerrero
‘5 days for the Cuban 5’
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