I Stand Alone – Medium Canvas Reprint (18″x24″)


SKU: ISA1824 Category:


Reprint of an original piece made for Cambridge Arts Council.

Medium: Adobe Illustrator
iPad Pro, Apple Pencil
Year: 2017

I drew a quintessential brown man, someone who could be black, Middle Eastern, Latino, South Asian, mixed heritage. Such men and people are often singled out and seen as outsiders, less than, or a threat. It’s isolating, humiliating, and hard to be seen as “different.”

In the song I Stand Alone, Robert Glasper says the lines, “sometimes we feel alone, but alone ain’ts always wrong” and he flips the idea of being different on its head. Instead of isolation and not belonging, #istandalone becomes an emblem for creative leadership and courage:

I’m flying high up in the sky
I will not run, I will not hide
I stand alone, I stand alone

The only test is to survive
I will succeed I will not die
I stand alone, I stand alone

Glasper challenges the temptation to conform and be like everyone else (even for the best and most successful of artists) when he writes,

“The very people who blazed our path to self-expression and pioneered a resolutely distinct and individual voice have too often succumbed to mind-numbing sameness and been seduced by simply repeating what we hear, what somebody else said or thought and not digging deep to learn what we think or what we feel, or what we believe.”

“Thank God we’ve still got musicians and thinkers whose obsession with excellence and whose hunger for greatness remind us that we should all be unsatisfied with mimicking the popular, rather than mining the fertile veins of creativity that God placed deep inside each of us.”

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