“Working with the artists in Shuman has given me the opportunity to help give a voice to those whose voices have been taken from them.”
As an extension of 1Hood Media Academy, funded by the Robert C. Smith Fund and the Betsey R. Clark Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation, 1Hood teaching artists and staff began making monthly visits to Shuman Juvenile Detention Center in January 2018. Through individual and group engagement, youth will learn a variety of skills and concepts including music and media making, songwriting, beat making, and the production process. The program will run through December 2019.
In 2011, commissioned by the Heinz Endowments, Pew conducted a report entitled Portraits and Perceptions, that found 87% of the time young Black men were portrayed in media in Pittsburgh were depicted as criminals. This study laid the foundation for our core program, 1Hood Media Academy, which offers media literacy and media creation training for high school aged youth of color to encourage the creation of responsible media. Adapting the program for the youth within Shuman is aimed at reducing recidivism through positive interaction and reinforcement. 1Hood Media believes that with increased skill to create and self-express, youth can be internally motivated to interrupt the negative trajectory that develops after exposure to the criminal justice system.
Not only will this program provide students with tools and skills to channel their creativity and emotions through a positive medium, but 1Hood intends to act as resource outside of the detention facility. Participants are invited to work with the Collective outside of the walls of the Detention Center, should they find a lasting interest in conscious creation. 1Hood’s Creative Director, Jordan Howard (LiveFromTheCity), insists that “working with the artists in Shuman has given me the opportunity to help give a voice to those whose voices have been taken from them.” He continues, “ Hearing their stories further inspires me to embrace creative authenticity.”
The Media Academy will be re-launching in April for students within the Pittsburgh area and will take place at 1Hood Offices. It will now include a visual arts component encompassing graphic design, videography and photography. Interested parties can apply online now.