You can fiddle and you can skat and try to make the problems of society go away but it won’t. Artist Lisa “Jenko” Weathersby depicts turning your passion and pain into something that everyone can learn from.
As a multi-talented artist, Weathersby goes by her artist name Jenko. Being a Chicago native drives Jenko to make art for minorities. Some of her art addressed problems from going to Lindbloom Math and Science Academy and her community. Going to Lindblom gave Jenko the chance to see first hand how the crimes in Englewood impacted the neighborhood. Being surrounded by this caused Jenko to work on a mural with a group of artists to address the high crime rate in the neighborhood. Little did Jenko know this would lead to her everlasting drive to make her art to address the lives of minorities so that others can learn about them.
While Jenko took the chance to expand herself she created Harmless. Harmless is a movement that allows the expression of minority oppression and allows minorities to unite together because we are greatly divided due to splitting ourselves up from one another. Jenko embodies this through all her work and projects. She uses this mindset as she creates new projects that can start an uproar. Her project that caught attention at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign happened during Black History Month. Within this project, she posted post-it notes in various places on the campus. Her reason for this was to teach other races about Black History. She soon decided to further her message when another Black man died. The project that emerged from Geroge Floyd’s death and numerous Black lives that shouldn’t have been lost due to police brutality and at the hands of racists white people. This project is called “__ is Harmless.” This project is so important because it gives the message that Black people are harmless and we do not deserve to be treated unjustly just because of our skin color. To become apart of this project follow @theharmlessprojects on Instagram and send her a selfie of yourself.
Though Jenko has influencers like Kara walker and Basquiat she is truly an influence herself. Watching Jenko grow and take a stand in what she believes in through her art inspires me every day. Regardless if it’s her animations, creating the Cre8tives = United logo, painting, saying her poems, and many of other projects that she works on that leave me speechless every time. Jenko is much more than what everyone thinks and she is a force that shall not be messed with. I could go all day about how amazing she is but I wouldn’t be able to find all the right words so I’m going to let her artwork do it for her.
If it is one thing that you should’ve learned about Jenko from this article is that she craves a need for change especially with everything that is going on in the world. One thing I learned about Jenko is that she is going to try to break the barriers against us regardless if it’s through her using her voice or projecting it through her art. If you’d like to keep up with Jenko, her projects, or if you are looking for a logo or cover art to be made you can follow her on Instagram @jenkoisharmless and on twitter @jenkymay.