In recent weeks, mass protests and demonstrations have been staged across the US and worldwide following a series of recent killings in the US including Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd.

In this time, Instagram has become a space for the global community to move in solidarity, towards a single mission: to demonstrate that black lives matter. The official Instagram account of Black Lives Matter – an international movement founded in 2013 – has now garnered 2.9 million followers and counting.

Many posts across Instagram have come from artists and creatives, making new work, or recontextualising historical pieces to respond to, and give a voice to this moment. What has emerged is art’s role, through the globally communicative force of social media to repeat and reinterpret messages that words often fail to articulate. 

The content of the last week has proved that art has the power to educate, spark debate, initiate change and speak about racial injustice, as well as take action against it. Many artists and creative bodies are sharing links to charities and resources or directing funds from the sale of their work to Black Lives Matter-related initiatives and organisations. These include the Minnesota Freedom Fund the Black Visions Collective and the 15 Percent Pledge

Here are just some of the many voices using their visual language to express the collective rage, resistance and solidarity of this moment and beyond, reinforced through art.

Hank Willis Thomas – artist
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by ᕼᗩᑎK (@hankwillisthomas) on

Fahamu Pecou – artist
 

Mark Clennon – photographer
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

today. #shotbymarkc

A post shared by mark clennon. (@mark.c) on

Jammie Holmes – artist
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

#JammieHolmes’ aerial demonstration was featured in @TMagazine: ‘George Floyd’s Final Words, Written in the Sky’ by #HilaryMoss. Tap the link in bio to read more! ⁠ ⁠ On Saturday afternoon, a small plane glided past the Statue of Liberty in New York with a banner that read, “They’re Going to Kill Me.” These were among the last words of #GeorgeFloyd, a black man who was killed while in the custody of the Minneapolis Police Department on May 25. ⁠ ⁠ Similar banners, each emblazoned with more of Floyd’s final words, billowed behind planes above a handful of cities across the United States: The sentence “Please I Can’t Breathe” could be seen circling downtown Detroit while “My Stomach Hurts” loomed overhead in Miami; the phrase “My Neck Hurts,” flying atop a peaceful protest in Dallas, made local news as “Everything Hurts,” stood out against the gray Los Angeles sky. ⁠ ⁠ “I thought this was a better way of getting the message out” than taking action on the ground, he said in a phone interview, mentioning that plane banners are mostly used in the area where he lives to advertise for golf tournaments. After watching some of the footage of the now former police officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck as he pleaded for his life and finally became unresponsive, Holmes approached #LibraryStreetCollective, a gallery that began representing him in April, to back the idea. It all came together in 48 hours. The artist described the project as “an act of social conscience and protest.”⁠ ⁠ #BlackLivesMatter @JHolmes214 #JammieHolmes #JHolmes @TMagazine #LibraryStreetCollective⁠⠀

A post shared by Library Street Collective (@librarystreetcollective) on

Mona Chalabi – data journalist
 

Nikkolas Smith – artist
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Nikkolas Smith (@nikkolas_smith) on

Jarrett Key – artist 
 

Fuzzed Up Bear – artist
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

#georgefloyd

A post shared by fuzzedupbear (@fuzzedupbear) on

Calida Garcia Rawles – painter, in collaboration with Diedrick Brackens – textile artist
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Where to begin... We’re all feeling it, helplessness in the face of tragedy after tragedy. Along with the unrest unfolding in Minneapolis, we’re all watching folks stand firmly on the frontlines across the country and around the world as they do their part to make a difference. Even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, people everywhere continue taking to the streets, risking everything, to fight for justice. As artists, it’s important to us to provide assistance to those who want change and are also, in need of a helping hand. __ Diedrick Brackens and I have created a limited-run of posters to raise funds to support the following organizations (swipe left). With proof of your direct donation of $100 or greater to one of these efforts, you will receive a poster from both of us. __ If you’re able to join us, please make your donation via the link in my bio and email your receipt to action@vsf.la __ #DiedrickBrackens #CalidaRawles #GeorgeFloyd #BreonnaTaylor #AhmaudArbery #TonyMcdade #TakeAction #BlackLivesMatter #Minnesota #protest #louisville

A post shared by Calida Garcia Rawles (@calidagarciarawles) on

Greg Ruth – artist
 

Lorna Simpson – artist
 

Deborah Roberts – artist
 

Adam Pendleton – artist
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

#seethesin

A post shared by Adam Pendleton (@pendleton.adam) on

Eric Rieger (Hot Tea) – artist