Art with the Power to Impact the World
When Shukrani Nangwala '21 moved to the Twin Cities from Tanzania during high school, his photography hobby was a way to immerse himself in his new surroundings and stave off home sickness. He arrived alone to the U.S., moving in with a close, supportive family friend, who’s like an uncle to him. His mom and siblings remained in Tanzania.
Stepping out of his comfort zone has served Shukrani well. It gave him an opportunity to learn more about other communities.
At St. Thomas, he joined the Urban Art Mapping Research Project led by professors from English, art history and geography. They catalogue street art from numerous countries and make it accessible through an online database.
“It really opened my eyes to art in the streets; art that tells stories with the power to impact the world,” he said.
It helped him view the world through a different lens. “Coming from a low-income country to a high-income community – how people react to the disparities is very different,” he said, but one thing is similar: “Everyone wants to be given the chance to be viewed as a human.”
And he learned something else. “It doesn’t matter where you are from, whether outside or inside the country, St. Thomas does care about these stories,” he said. That’s why he’s proud to declare: “I’m Shukrani. And I am a Tommie.”
Thank You to the Artists Featured in This Year's CAS Spot
|Kao Lee Thao||Our Common Threads|
|Rock Cyfi Martinez||Spirit of Misi-zibi|
|Claudia Valentino and Daniela Bianchini||Empowering Generations|
|Chuck U||Maritime Law|
|Nu-One||It Was All a Dream|
|Katrina Knutson||612 & 651|
|Marlena Miles||The Kaposia Times|
|Redcan Graffiti Jam||Mitakuye Oyasin 2020|
|Ua Si Creative, formerly ArtCrop||Ask Why|
|Missy Whiteman||Celestial Embodiment: X|
|Peyton Scott Russell||We (#3)|
|Miskitoos (Holly) Henning||Waasamo-inini|
|Fadlabi||The Air at Night|
|Jordan M. Hamilton||Sankofa: Mutable Stability|
|Thomasina Topbear||Unci Maka|
|Hillside Murals||Saint Paul Vintagisms|
|Reggie Leflore||The Afrocentric Spectrum|
|Mariela Ajras||Motherhood and Migration|