Every day we see pain, protest, progress and more pain. Now that the revolution is here, everyone needs to help the movement — in whatever way possible — and as a social media editor, part of my responsibility is keeping my foot on y'all's timelines. That way, I can say with confidence that whoever follows PAPER has no excuse for staying unaware. So, while I continue to use this platform to bring important stories to light, I thought why not open my purse and share some of this clout with deserving Black voices?

The result: a Twitter thread calling on Black artists to share their work with as many PAPER followers as possible. Below, discover some of our favorite people that hit reply. Scroll through, enjoy this talent and follow these artists. Black lives, and Black art, matter.

Robert Chavis (@robsnapped)

Do you feel pressure to have a message about the Black experience in your art?

No, because I am the "Black Experience." If you are viewing my art, you are seeing it in the exact way I do, whether it be my BLM Mural drone video, portraits of Black children in their environment, self portraits or street photography. You get to feel what I feel, and see what I see through a lens/ video camera.

"I am the Black Experience."
—Robert Chavis

What inspires you?

I'm inspired by seeing other Black artists thrive in their own avenues. It's like adding fuel to the fire I set inside me. There's a joy that comes from seeing the final product of artistic expression.

If you could work with anyone who would it be?

It's a crazy long list but my "Big Three" are PAPER, GQ and Shea Moisture.

Dee Williams (@hideexdee)

Do you feel pressure to have a message about the Black experience in your art?

I don't feel pressure to have a message because as a Black photographer who focuses solely on the African diaspora, any image I create is a message. The photo/ art world for decades — and to this day — heavily focuses and celebrates imagery created by white men, so any work I produce disrupts that status quo.

What inspires you?

My family and friends inspire me, along with my fellow peer group of photographers. We are all a talented bunch of creatives navigating life in our own way. It is my mission to document our joy and share it with the world.

"It is my mission to document our joy and share it with the world."
—Dee Williams

If you could work with anyone who would it be?

RIHANNA! I want to be her personal photographer so bad. I'm manifesting that into my life. I know it is going to happen.

Dante Nicholas (@allthingsdante)

Do you feel pressure to have a message about the Black experience in your art?

I wouldn't say pressure, but I know that in being a Black creator, I have a responsibility to tell our stories. Black people are far too often misunderstood. So with my art, I really do try to show us in a light that may have never been shined otherwise.

What inspires you?

People inspire me. Everybody has a unique story and unique life experiences. And learning about that uniqueness is something that I'm inspired by on a daily basis. Also, my peers (millennials and Gen Z) inspire me with our drive to create the change we want to see for our society.

"With my art, I really do try to show us in a light that may have never been shined otherwise."
—Dante Nicholas

If you could work with anyone who would it be?

I would 1000% love to work with Rihanna — that would be legendary!

Josef Hicks (@josef.hicks)

Do you feel pressure to have a message about the Black experience in your art?

I put a lot of myself into my art so I don't feel too pressured about putting the Black experience into my art. The challenge for me is trying to balance my paid work and my art. There will be times when I do not have time to focus on my art. I do a lot of work for brands and other people who are looking for something specific. I'm working towards trying to shoot for people and brands who align with my art.

What inspires you?

The youth and the next generation is what inspires me. When it is all said and done I want to be the image of "follow your dreams." I want the youth to know that it doesn't matter what your hair looks like, the color of your skin, or what the generation before you wants you to do. I want them to be able to look at me and see that I followed my dream and I never gave up. I want them to see that it is possible to do what your heart desires regardless of what society tells them.

"When it is all said and done I want to be the image of 'follow your dreams.'"
—Josef Hicks

If you could work with anyone who would it be?

One of the artists at the top of my list to work with would probably be 6lack. I love how raw he is as an artist and I feel like if I was ever able to connect with him we could create some timeless art. Fingers crossed!

Benry Fauna (@benryfauna)

Do you feel pressure to have a message about the Black experience in your art?

The only pressure I feel is trying to reconcile with my experiences in a pragmatic way. I feel emboldened to have a message, but it's one I'm still trying to articulate.

What inspires you?

I love creating visual adlibs, where I seek to provide an atmosphere where comfort inspires confidence. Each photograph is an isolated collaboration.

"I feel emboldened to have a message, but it's one I'm still trying to articulate."
—Benry Fauna

If you could work with anyone who would it be?

That's a loaded question! I Pride myself on being a quintessential people person, and I implore anyone to work with me.

Kimberly Kyne (@kimkyne)

Do you feel pressure to have a message about the Black experience in your art?

I would describe it as an urgency. Growing up, seeing visions of myself in the media were few and far between. I make it a priority to celebrate the beauty in Blackness. I recently created a piece for the LA Times that illustrates the inequality that exists in the US, along with the fact that many refuse to acknowledge it. Using my art as a vehicle for activism gives me purpose.

"I make it a priority to celebrate the beauty in Blackness."
—Kimberly Kyne

What inspires you?

I'm inspired by artistic visionaries like James Turrell, Kerry James Marshall and Kara Walker.

If you could work with anyone who would it be?

Thundercat, Solange, Steve Lacy, Tierra Whack, Tobi Lou, KAYTRANADA, BROCKHAMPTON, Kali Uchis, Jorja Smith, SZA and Rihanna. A collab with Pyer Moss or Brother Vellies would be dreamy.

Wavebeast (@wave.beast.prod)

Do you feel pressure to have a message about the Black experience in your art?

It's not that I feel pressure, as that insinuates a sense of unwillingness on my part but it's the exact opposite: it's my first instinct. Art is a reflection of your experiences and emotions and being that I am Black, I wouldn't want to convey anything else.

"Art is a reflection of your experiences and emotions and being that I am Black, I wouldn't want to convey anything else."
—Wavebeast

What inspires you?

It's the Black youth that inspires me the most. The idea of showing them that they have more options than being just an athlete, rapper or a "gangster," not that there is anything wrong with the first two. Growing up Black, these are the primary professions pushed on us via media. So to be able to show them that you should embrace your creativity, or whatever endeavors they choose, is what drives me to do the work that I do. As far as artistic inspiration goes, artists Kanye West, Tyler Mitchell, Quentin Tarantino, Namsa Leuba, Arielle Bobb-Willis, Spike Lee, Jordan Peele, Mescondi and Todd Hido inspire me. I also get a lot of inspiration from movies.

If you could work with anyone who would it be?

If I could work with anyone, I would say Kanye West, Mowalola, Teflar, Essence magazine, and Raf Simons!

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