Festival registration is open! Design Week 2020 runs virtually from August 3-7.
We met Fran Bittakis through Adam Garcia, who served on our programming jury last year. Inspired by her work, we interviewed her to amplify the incredible moves she was making in the community. One of her quotes made waves the day it was posted:
I’m not here for performative allyship and trendy buzzwords like “diversity, equity, and inclusion” because that should be the standard—the minimum effort these creative industries should be held to. Take a step back. Put someone else in power who has not had that opportunity, and do what you can to mentor them through that process with your fragility and ego left at the door. I want my work to stand for this—to show the world my community is worthy and always has been.
Fran is the creative force behind JOOP JOOP Creative, a radical agency centered around a community roster of talent and creative event and media production. We wanted to resource her mission to lift up BIPoC and LGBTQIA2S+ creators, so we asked her to collaborate with us on the production of our Opening Party, back when we thought we’d all be together. She also served as a juror on our Design Fellowship committee, in order to connect the conceptual development of our launch event to the broader design efforts for this year.
Though the Opening Party had to be shelved when the pandemic hit, our relationship with JOOP JOOP has deepened. During the time of COVID and the Black Lives Matter movement, we’ve found opportunities to engage and share community and space together.
JOOP JOOP is curating our second week of content for our Open House features, and is centering their features around the theme of Radical Creativity.
JOOP JOOP’s Community Roster was born from a desire to bring together BIPoC/LGBTQIA2S+, multidisciplinary creatives that are so frequently overlooked. Not only does JOOP JOOP seek to amplify these voices, but also to foster relationships and resources to help them survive in a world not meant for them. Especially now, with the movement bringing so many to action; it’s not enough to simply hire Black and Brown creatives. JOOP JOOP is focusing on helping companies bring the right foundational support to these new hires to ensure they have success in their work environments.
We creatives are the true intersection of art and activism. Not only is our art progressive and pushing the boundaries of what’s accepted, our mere presence is radical. Showing up to work with Black and Brown bodies, unique gender identities, and the experiences of living a life of oppression is radical and revolutionary in and of itself. This series seeks to give a platform to those who deserve it, especially in this time of reimagining and evolution.
- Fran Bittakis, JOOP JOOP Creative