Juneteenth Art Activism Challenge

— Written By and last updated by Luke Shealy

Juneteenth Art Activism Challenge. There are several hands raised and the word liberation at the bottom.

From the Civil Rights Movement to Black Lives Matter, Black young people have always been on the frontlines of fighting for racial justice and liberation. Moments like these underscore that unceasing commitment. To spotlight this work and commemorate Juneteenth, we are calling for Black youth submissions of original art pieces (e.g., a painting, original music, spoken word, poetry, a blog post, etc.) centered around the theme of liberation.

Pieces can be sent directly to us via our submissions link by July 10, 2020. A selection of work will be featured on our #PassTheMicYouth blog.

The first 50 submissions will be matched with a $10 donation to We Are, an anti-racist education organization in Durham, North Carolina. Featured artists will also receive a #PassTheMicYouth tote bag, sticker, and pen.

Below are a few of our favorite submissions so far along with commentary from youth creators! We are still accepting submissions.


Briana Benkin

“I would like to feature my video project with my spoken word poem, to support the Black Lives Matter movement and express the importance and urgency people need to acknowledge to take action however they can to spread awareness.”

Liberation of the Diaspora

Abigail Thomas

“My experience as a black American is deeply rooted to my family and friends. Having black friends from different background inspired this piece on how our collective history from America, Caribbean islands, South America and the African continent connect us. The Pan African movement to unify people of African descent and move forward with out liberation is what this piece is about. We need to work together to bring about change.”

A black woman raises her arms towards a stary sky as birds fly from her arms.

Face Forward

Rachel M. James

“This painting is about how young black teens in America are raised and raised to do when stopped by the police. Where it is put your hands up, have no face expression, or not to move at all. Our struggle is to just stay alive. That’s why I put the words on the side. The bullets in the American Flag is to show how corrupt our nation is for the black community.”

A black face looks ahead. An american flag is behind the face with bullet holes. in the direction the face is pointing is written, don't shoot.