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Check out Endiya Griffin’s Artwork

Today we’d like to introduce you to Endiya Griffin.

Endiya, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
My story starts in a tiny apartment. I say that not to claim that my creativity was birthed from struggle or that it was suppressed by my surroundings, in fact, my experience has been quite the contrary. I was an only child born 16 years ago to a single mother and a teacher. Her passions for education and exploration were passed onto me like genes, woven into the fabric of my being.

On the first Christmas, I can remember, she worked three jobs to give me a five-piece band set, easel, and art supplies in hopes of helping me find my gift. I was immediately drawn to the way that I could fashion my realities through the narratives I attached to the images I created. I continue to be connected to my poetry, narrative, and visual arts in this way. Art enables me to wind and unwind my thoughts, exploring my every emotion. For this reason, curiosity is the best gift my mother has ever given me.

We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
Creativity is the way I share a part of myself- sometimes I share with me, and sometimes I share with the world. Primarily, I write- spilling onto paper when my mind is overflowing, design. My writing mainly consists of narratives or notes about my identity and my community. I am also passionate about the way I can outwardly express my personality through embroidery and fashion design. I hope to use my art to transform perceptions and break down barriers.

Have things improved for artists? What should cities do to empower artists?
The “starving artist” narrative is one that is commonly reverberated and reflective of the lack of appreciation society often has for creators. I think the idea that art is not a job is starting to fade away as my generation is growing up. Generation Z has a value for creators that I don’t feel has been present and lasting in previous generations. Technology has fostered creative expression, so as a resulting phenomenon like paying artists in exposure rather than monetarily are increasingly being viewed as problematic. This is good for artists. However, the rise of technology also makes it easier for people to take advantage of the creations that artists post online. Navigating the digital space as an artist will be tricky, but face-to-face interaction between diverse communities in metropolitan cities like San Diego will likely foster a stronger artist community as it has historically.

Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
My work spans from involvement with the ACLU to writing for NPR’s YR Media, and all the way down to local poetry reading at Black Xpression in Logan Heights. Additionally, I am working on a few startups involving my fashion. I am trying to occupy a multiplicity of spaces in both advocacy-oriented and artistic spaces, so the best way to keep up with what I’m doing is definitely to follow me on Instagram @endiyaah. Look for me in creative spaces, and you might find me!

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
All photos are mine. People featured in photos are Angel, Jaymani, Cienna, Khadijah, Senait, and myself.

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