On May 25, 20, an African-American man named Goerge Floyd was murdered in Minneapolis by three police officers. He was murdered because of the color of his skin. For years people with dark skin were enslaved, abused, humiliated and killed. In the present 21st century, this racist behaviour has not changed. People with dark skin suffer globally from racism and it is time to stop it. Unfortunately, George Floyd is not the only victim of deadly police violence, because from 2015 to May this year alone, 1252 cases have been reported in which African-Americans died at the hands of police officers in the USA. However, the number of unreported cases is much higher. People were shot because, for example, a hairbrush was seen as a weapon while a man was jogging or with candy in his hand.
The series is called „say their names“ so that the names of the victims are not forgotten. Each picture will be accompanied by the name of the person who carried the object in question and an accompanying text with background and facts. The series raises the question what was really seen as a weapon to fire fatal shots or to kill people in other ways. It also tries to point to the mass murder and generally the worldwide oppression of black people.
My research on this topic turns out to be difficult, since the police, especially in the USA, are often involved in the cases shown and little information (especially on evidence details) is made public. This again shows that if other citizens do not intervene and record the procedure, as in the case of George Floyd, it is difficult to expect complete transparency. Partly of course out of respect for the deceased. That‘s why I have recreated the scenes as accurate as researchable, but it‘s not about the one hundred percent accurate portrayal, because the essential statement of the series shows that you can lose your life at the hands of someone else during the most everyday activities with the most commonplace objects and that unfortunately the cases shown here are and will be far from being the only ones.