Oree Originol, Justice for Sean Monterrosa
July 9–August 23, 2020
Above 624 Irving Street
San Francisco, CA 94122
On June 2, 2020, Sean Monterrosa, a 22-year-old resident of San Francisco, was fatally shot by Vallejo police officer Jarrett Tonn. Monterrosa was on his knees with his hands above his waist when Tonn fired five shots from inside his vehicle, through his own windshield. His death occurred at the beginning of a national uprising, with protests around the world calling for justice and an end to police violence.
In 2014, Bay Area artist Oree Originol launched Justice For Our Lives, an open-source digital portrait series of people who have been killed by U.S. law enforcement. Inspired by Black Lives Matter activism, the black-and-white portraits have served as pivotal instruments in the fight for justice against state-sponsored terrorism. Often working with the families of those killed when selecting the source photograph, Originol distills images into simple line work that easily translate to reproducible templates. His images have been publicly disseminated worldwide in demonstrations, classrooms, art galleries, as street art and online.
You can download your own PDF of Originol’s poster for Sean Monterrosa here.
With permission from Sean Monterrosa’s family, Oree Originol and Premiere Jr. honor his memory. We thank the family and Kate Rhoades for their help in making this exhibition possible.
Oree Originol has been an active member of the Bay Area art community since he moved to the region from Los Angeles in 2009. With a background in graffiti and abstract, colorful painting, Originol joined the artist network CultureStrike in 2012, connecting his practice to activism and social engagement. His work has been covered in the East Bay Express, the San Francisco Examiner and a KQED Arts documentary; his Justice for Our Lives portraits were included in Take This Hammer at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; and will be shown at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. in the fall of 2020.
In lieu of a sidewalk opening, we encourage you to attend @justice4sean_’s Tucan(s) Day block party this Sunday, July 12 at San Francisco’s Holly Park.
Petitions and ways to donate:
Sean Monterrosa Funeral and Legal Fees
“Knowledge Up” Library in Sean Monterrosa’s memory
Stand with Sean petition
Petition for “Hands Up Act”
Petition for Sean Monterrosa
Justice for Sean Monterrosa email to DA and Mayor
84/100 - Andres Guardado, an 18 year old Salvadoran man, was shot and killed by LA County Sheriff deputies on June 18th in Gardena, CA while working as a security guard at an auto body shop. He was approached and chased by police who shot him in the back 6 times at a nearby alley. Police seized video surveillance equipment from the body shop that would of captured the encounter to cover up their crime of unnecessary killings of black and brown people. The officers also allege they where not wearing body cameras. Despite the worldwide demonstrations the killings continue. This is why we march to hold these killers accountable and Defund the police who are proving they do not work to keep us safe. Artwork available for download here.
Here is a stencil painting mini series I created to jump off showcasing my new style of work online which derives from the type of work I was running wit when I first moved to The Bay and before I became involved in activism. I made it a goal this year to finally reactivate this style of work as I continue to finally close out my Justice For Our Lives 💯 project. I plan to be back on the gallery circuit again by the end of the year. I dont know how many years its been since ive exhibited a new painting. It feels really good to take a new direction with my work. : )
New Shapes 1-9
Stencil on canvas
One year ago, #ClaudiaPatriciaGomezGonzalez a 19 year old indigenous woman from Guatemala was shot in the head by a border patrol agent in Rio Bravo, Texas after she crossed the border with a group of people. She left her hometown of San Juan Ostuncalco and travelled 1500 miles to the US in hopes of finding work and reunite with her boyfriend who made it to Virgina a year earlier. CBP claimed the agent attempted to apprehend a group of migrants but came under attack with the use of “blunt objects” but they later changed their story using terms like “allegedly assaulted” and “rushed” the agent without the mention of any blunt objects. The initial statement described her as “one of the assailants” and then was changed as just a member of the group. A resident who lives next door to the location of the shooting filmed the aftermath on Facebook live. She claimed she never heard any verbal commands from the agent before she heard the fatal gun shot. In the video she is seen yelling at the agent asking why he shot the woman who was hiding behind bushes near her fence. Claudia Patricia Gomez Gonzalez came to this country to find economic refuge. This is not what should happen to a young woman who was in pursuit of her dreams and aspirations. The agent should be criminally charged and convicted for this crime. End impunity within CBP! #justiceforourlives
I started going to Laney college and finally learned how to use illustrator. For a long time now I have only been using Photoshop and I realize how much easier it is it work out my ideas using different applications. One of my first projects that I took on aside from school projects has been this mini series of 8 animal designs. This was just to get my gears rolling in coming up with ideas using my shapes. All of this will start to materialize more and more this year. Look out for more designs and paintings of this style of work.
This year I decided to go to college for the first time in my life. My focus in my first semester has been graphic art. Up until I started college, I have been a self taught in design with limited knowledge of Adobe applications. One of the main projects last semester for all my graphic art classes was to create and submit a piece for the #inspireoakland campaign organized by Oakland Digital, a non-profit design studio bridging the gaps between low income students and the tech industry. I was motivated to complete this project because it was an opportunity to not only turn in an assignment for my grades but also be able to showcase my work in public throughout the town. The theme of this project was on what it is about Oakland that inspires you? I chose to depict an image of the Warriors in their championship glory right after their 2017 win over the Cavaliers. In this image you see the players huddled together with their arms extended out reaching towards the trophy in a symbolic gesture of people coming together reaching for success. I thought this to be very representative of how Oakland comes together to develop and sustain community and culture. I also wanted to do something that both old and new Oakland would appreciate on a mere sports entertainment level. I think this is a piece that everyone in The Town who is a Warriors fan will vibe with especially for the fact that we are now back to back champions having recently won the 2018 championship once again. Go Warriors! Go Oakland! For more information about the Inspire Oakland campaign visit www.oaklanddigital.org
Im developing a new portrait series of people in the community that inspire me. The movers and shakers that transform our future through their art and activism. Living in the Bay Area were surrounded by so many amazing people and its only right to celebrate each other. Cat Brooks is an artist and a key organizer for the Black Lives Matter movement in The Bay Area. A co-founder of the Anti Police Terror Project, ONYX Organizing Committee, and is a member of Black Power Network. She has led countless demonstrations against police brutality in Oakland for the last several years and continues to be an active force in the black community. When I moved to The Bay in 09 she was one of the most prominent activist that I became aware of when attending public demonstrations against police brutality. Last year I had the pleasure to exhibit my art next to her video installation for "Take This Hammer" at YBCA and she was a point of contact for a few family members of people killed by police that I did portraits for. This picture was taken by Jazmin Morelos during a vigil for Demoria Hogg who was sleeping in his car on a busy street when he was shot and killed by Oakland Police. Be The Storm - Black Power Matters.
Today thousands of indigenous people and allies are gathering at Washington DC and around the country to demand the oil loving Trump administration to end fossil fuel projects like Keystone XL and DAPL that continue to violate indigenous rights and cause harm to water resources and the environment. Anthony Sul is an Ohlone native who joined Red Warrior Camp and other water protectors at Standing Rock and now is working to preserve the West Berkeley Shellmound, an ancient Ohlone burial site being threatened by high end development for housing and retail. Photography by @sunshinevelascoimages
"Rising Future" is inspired by the movement towards racial equality as a key component of creating true social change. The obvious impression from this mural is a smiling face that greets you as you walk into the office setting a tone of positivity. The warm color pallet on the left side references to the sun and the cool pallet on the right side references to the moon in order to connect the physical movement of these cosmic bodies to the rhythms of revolution. A human/bird figure on the left appears with its arm reaching towards a black diamond at the center of the piece indicating the value of black life as the key focus in social struggles that ensure the upliftment of all people from other backgrounds and identities. The bridge arching from the left side towards the top of the mural includes profiles of human heads that fade from light to dark skin expressing the concept of deconstructing racial privilege and patriarchy in order to work towards equality in our society. My personal experience as a Xicano in this country has taught me how racial inequality marginalizes people of color creating unhealthy relationships amongst ourselves and with mother earth. This mural expresses the need for radical inclusion of black and brown people in spaces like the field of technology.