Today, April 27, marks the one-year anniversary of the Baltimore Uprising. The day after, while images of police in riot gear, smoke- and teargas-filled streets, and a CVS on fire were flashing across television screens around the world, a group of students were busy capturing a Baltimore largely ignored by the media outside the city. A Baltimore full of young people who play basketball, or volunteer at the Y, or play the piano.
The students who captured these images are part of Wide Angle Youth Media, which OSI Community Fellow Gin Ferrara founded in 2000, and which OSI has been very proud to continue supporting. The photographs, of Baltimore youth discovering who they are, who want to be dancers or politicians, of young people who mentor others, who want their voices to be heard, have been compiled in a very special project called This is Baltimore.
The group collected both words and images from dozens of neighborhoods across the city, a city filled with “hope, vitality and resilience” in order to shine a spotlight on the positive side of Baltimore. The side that was shoved to the fringes of the television screen, if it was shown at all, after the uprising. As the group writes in the book’s introduction, “These should be the first images that come to mind when people want to represent this city.”
Wide Angle Youth Media has released this book today and encourages everyone to join the conversation #ThisIsBaltimore to share your own reflections.
Photo: Cover of #ThisIsBaltimore