Curating the Alchemy of the Artists' Journey
Veteran music journalist Billy Johnson Jr., a producer and curator for the Museum of Light, stresses the importance of discussing the artistic process. “The artists light up when asked to explain their art, their intentions, and connecting with their audience,” Johnson says. “Each of these stories are incredibly motivating.”
The Light has been in the works for a few years. When Joslyn Rose Lyons, who conceptualized the project, called me to get involved, I got the butterflies.
I said, “You mean, we’ll talk to artists about purpose? Whether they compare their work to alchemy? No buzzy moments?”
I was in.
I figured creatives prefer to discuss more substantive topics, and we found this to be true with every artist we’ve interviewed. Seeing how Pharoahe Monch, V.Bozeman, Michelle Williams, TiRon and Ayomari and so many others light up when asked to describe their creative process has been fulfilling.
Considering the need for more platforms for artists to express themselves beyond the scope of their latest promotional efforts, I’m that much more thankful to be a part of helping generate more Light.
One of the coolest aspects of The Light is how it takes shape in different forms. It’s a documentary in the works. It’s shareable inspirational quotes from artists. It’s an online interview series. It’s constantly evolving.
Another incredible part of The Light, for me, is getting to work alongside esteemed colleagues who share The Light’s vision. We’re grateful to have editorial support from RESPECT mag.
Below, meet the curators.
Billy Johnson Jr.
"There's an over saturation of salacious media coverage on the internet. The intent of this project is to add more positive affirmations into the mix. The artists we have interviewed for the light thus far have shared with us the philosophies of their triumphs and we know people will be blessed when they hear these stories. This is just a taste of what's to come... Those who are determined, fearless, and accomplished will find affirmation in the light. Those who are hopeful, apprehensive, and in need of direction, will use the light as a guide. That is our purpose."
Billy Johnson Jr., Music Journalist
"As a leader, a student and a die hard fan of hip-hop, my responsibility as a journalist/producer is to showcase the greater good of the lifestyle, and preserve the culture that raised me. My decision to unite with influential, like minded peers to bring the light to the world was a no brainier."
Adell Henderson, Music Journalist/Editor in Chief
"It inspires me to explore the creative process and to understand more
about the artists' journey. The museum of light creates this space.
It's a platform where we highlight this process. All the content we
are creating here, allows people to see a glimpse of the job of an
artist and the magic that happens along the way."
Joslyn Rose Lyons, Producer/Director
"As history shows, it is hard not to be drawn to the light. Both in
people and in projects that resonate. When Joslyn first asked me if I
was interested in aproject dedicated to giving language and focus to
what drives the creative mind, I realized was experiencing her
creativity at work during that very conversation, excited and
energized by the brainstorm that was stirring between us in
collaboration. Realizing that the very feeling I was experiencing in
that moment was the focus of the light project itself, how could I not
contribute? It was already happening, and it hasn't stopped since."
Rafael Casal, Writer/Producer/Performer GETRAFAEL.COM
"The light represents the power of the arts. I find it fascinating to
examine the truly gifted artist, who has not only mastered the
technical aspects of their craft but is also able to connect with,
influence and inspire an audience through their artistic light."
Matt Smith, Producer/Director REVOLUTIONLABORATORY.COM
"I would be crazy to turn down the opportunity to work with the
producers and curators for this project. I make it a habit of working
with creative and inspirational people, and that’s who I'm working
with for The Museum of Light. It’s important to explore the light
and an artist's journey in order to get a greater understanding of
them, their process, but most importantly, its cool when you find
commonalities in their journey that you relate to, and that speaks to
you...That is inspiring."
Malik Buie, Director/Producer BET Networks & REDSUMMER.TV
You can also find this story and others from The Museum of Light at RESPECT Magazine.