50 Shots – Humanizing America’s Most Hunted
“50 Shots: Humanizing America’s Most Hunted” is a passion project that features 50 black men who are positively contributing to the Chicago community and beyond.
Chicago photographer Amos asks, “What would these communities lose if these men were imprisoned?” These men represent all the black men who are pre-judged solely because of the color of their skin. The project is very simple. I took their mugshot in front of a lineup sheet while they held up a sign stating things that people may not know by just looking at them.
I want people to know what and who they are. For example, my cousin may look like a thug but he is a(n) 1. Musical Genius 2. Aerospace Engineer 3. Ship Inspector for the US Navy 4. Owner of a Masters Degree 5. Sucker for making his mom happy.
The simple question that I’m posing to the community is:
What would our communities lose if these men were imprisoned? The signs that they are holding up ultimately answer that question. I don’t want it to be deep, just direct. No statistics on how many black men are arrested daily or how many are currently in jail…I could care less about those numbers because essentially they are unfair and irrelevant.
What I DO care about are my friends and the black men who are labeled as a derelict before even given a chance to prove their character. I want people to know what black men are capable of despite what society has deemed them to be.
Amos grew up on the Southside of Chicago but attended school on the westside at Providence St. Mel School. She is thankful for having both
experienced the south and west sides of Chicago because those experiences sculpted her growth and made her who she is. Imani studied West African dance since the age of 5 and was a company member Alyo Children’s Dance Theatre for over 10 years.
Amos attended Washington University and dances/choreographs with Afriky Lolo, a West African dance company under the direction of Diadie Bathily. She is also the choreographer for a West African dance team at Betty Shabazz Academy. In 2012, Imani decided to return home to Chicago and follow her passion for graphic design at the Illinois Institute of Art – Tinley Park, where she is currently attending.