“In American history, as in American life, Black Americans are invisible presences. They are not seen, not because of their absence but because of the presence of a myth that prepares and requires their absence. The myth of absence, which expresses this idea and intention, operates not by misinterpretation and slander but by silence and exclusion.”
– Lerone Bennett Jr.
This design doesn’t have much to do with Washington or Tacoma directly but it has everything to do with why eTc wanted to be involved with this collaborative effort. This shirt communicates very clearly and concisely the ideology behind the Kinsey family’s mission. They are here to show and tell us about truths that have been left out of history on purpose. A large portion of their life’s mission has been about revealing and amplifying stories, art, and artifacts about Black America that have been silenced by the generations before us. When people read the quote from Lerone Bennett Jr., they immediately find the truth in his words and comprehend exactly what we mean by “the myth of absence.” It becomes clear that erasure can and has happened to Black Americans since the arrival of the first colonizers. We have never been properly cared for or represented but we are currently unearthing proof that shows the other side of our shared legacies. The Kinsey Collection is a leader in the charge.
Support eTc and The Kinsey Collection as they work to give voice to those stories that have too long been left out of the history books. Purchase your own Myth of Absence t-shirt and explore the full eTc x The Kinsey Collection collaboration at the TAM Store online.
Disclaimer: This release is only available through the TAM pop-up location!
The TAM pop-up location is located at 1701 Pacific Ave Tacoma, WA, 98402. Hours of operation are Wednesday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm and Thursday through Saturday 11:00 am to 7:00 pm. Shop online at the TAM Store website.
All photos courtesy of Perris Wright and eTceTera.
Source: Tacoma Art Museum