Human Trafficking Awareness Art Exhibit in Progress
What is Human Trafficking?
Human trafficking is modern-day slavery and involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain labor or commercial sex. Every year, millions of men, women, and children are trafficked in countries around the world. This serious crime is not just a problem in other countries – it is also happening in the United States in urban, suburban, and rural areas.
Sex and human trafficking is the fastest growing illegal industry in the world; second only to the illicit drug industry. Every city in the United States is impacted by the scourge of human trafficking.
Human trafficking is a global, $150B industry; of that $99B derives from sex trafficking
Those trafficked for sex or labor make up 19% of trafficking services, but constitute 66% of trafficking profits
In Texas, 300,000 individuals are trafficked each day and 80,000 are minors
1 in 3 child runaways is captured for prostitution within 48 hours
Source: Homeland Security
How the Interest Began
Around 2015, I picked up a book called The Red Market thinking it was an anatomy book. The book focused on organ harvesting. Reading it opened my mind to the topic. I have never researched or had a conversation about Human Trafficking. Intaking this information sparked intense research in organ trafficking. Ideas and sketches started to emerge. I created a folder with the research and filed it away for future development when the time was right.
Years later in 2020, my dear friend Jacquelyn Aluotto co-founded NTZ (No Trafficking Zone). An organization to educate and equip caring leaders and citizens in the fight against trafficking. Now in 2023, the time to open that folder has arrived. Researching Human Trafficking lead to the discovery that Organ Harvesting is a secondary market as a result of those who are killed or perish in the hands of the traffickers. I will be creating drawings, paintings, and sculptures to bring Human Trafficking Awareness to the public in collaboration with Jacquelyn. The exhibit will launch 2024 in Houston, Texas curated by Jennifer Zazo-Brown, a Museum Program Specialist and Curator at Smithsonian National Museum. We are working to build the exhibit into a national tour.
There are millions of unheard voices caught in a web of human trafficking and sex trade on a global scale. This exhibit is to bring awareness into the public eye, igniting life into others so they may take action and assist in the battle. It will bring individuals together giving the cause strength to continue creating a dialogue where we can discover new and effective ways to pursue the cause, combine resources, create change, and restore lives.
The benefits of this exhibition will:
- provide intellectual and emotional insights into the cause
- give meaning to our lives and helps us understand how to fight the cause
- unite and impact the masses challenging the status quo
- increase our self-awareness, and challenge individuals to take action
- expand awareness and rejuvenate the cause
- generate new interest
- generate new sponsors and donors
- connect new and existing resources
- inspire other creators to use their talents for causes
- help us develop soft skills
- provide historical context
- lead to healthy and thoughtful cultural and global discussions
- give us a place to gather as a society for a common cause
Art has a way of breaking barriers and spreading the message across all cultures and races. Images can speak louder than words at times. Art opens the subconscious directly to absorb the visual bringing the information to the forefront. Art can inspire, uplift and spark individuals to act on a physical plain by connecting them emotionally and spiritually to the subject matter.
I wish the world was a kinder place without so much hatred, violence, greed, and quest for power. My creations would be different. As my body absorbs such destruction, I have no choice but to produce these crimes against humanity.
The art will consist of paintings, drawings, digital art, and sculptures. The focus is sex trafficking since it is the largest illegal growing industry globally with the United States leading the way in underage sex. Spotlighting Human Trafficking will shed light into a dark world where those in power leading this industry will become the focus, not just the victims. This industry exist due to the high demand, which leads to supply (Economics 101).
The works will cover sex trafficking from religious, political leaders to the common person on a global scale. The works will focus on institutions and groups of individuals. This is not to say all the individuals within the institutions or groups are at fault. There are good individuals within these sectors. We just can't afford to have bad apples within the institutions or groups that deal with the public trust or children.
All the artwork is being created specifically for this topic. Some of these works will easily be relatable as others will be difficult to grasp. This is not a topic one can sugar coat or go unnoticed. Exposure and awareness creates change and restores hope. New soldiers will arise to combat this issue well into the future.
Details of the art will be available upon creation on this page. An event poster using an exhibiting piece will be created for exhibitors. Sponsorship for the poster will allow a wider range to distribute this message.
If you are an organization, company, or gallery interested in hosting this exhibit, please contact Jennifer Zazo-Brown, Curator.
This is a great read for a comprehensive exploration of Modern Day Slavery & Human Trafficking.
Click on book to purchase.
These are a few documentaries and films produced based on actual charters and events which expand my knowledge of Human Trafficking,
for film details and links click on image.
To report suspected human trafficking to Federal law enforcement: