Brandon Sadler is known for his public murals, one of which appears in the 2018 Black Panther superhero movie. His work has been collected by individuals and the High Museum of Art and appears commercially for major brands. He recently completed a large mural for Trilith Studios in Fayetteville. (Photo by shamaal)
My initial feeling in the beginning of 2020 was sadness. The police violence wasn’t much of a shock to me. If you are a Black person in this country these aren’t new realities, unfortunately. The videos we saw of the protests and the riots and the pandemic, it was enough to overstimulate and then desensitize you in some respects. The way our media is designed primes you to be numb to it after a while. Hopefully this time has given people space to work on themselves. That’s the only way these things are going to change, otherwise we just end up with a different set of players with the same narrative. Then there will be another set of negative events for us to get into hysteria about. I think people, myself included, are embracing things that make life feel joyous and healthy. There is always going to be something that tries to combat that.
I do feel a change in my work. It seems to develop slower than before, in that I take even more time to “marinate” on things. Thematically I’m even more interested in communication, interaction and function as foundations of the work. I’m also embracing the process more. Before, I could be somewhat impatient with myself because I may have felt like making, but not be ready, and that would lead to feelings of failure. I’m grateful for where I’m at. I still have my ambitions and ideas realized, but I’m much more appreciative for the moments in between.
Travel and experiences are a huge part of refilling my creative tank and so I’m looking forward to getting back to some of that and learning something new. I would like to see the Four Corners and the Grand Canyon and different sights in Utah and Wyoming. Wherever I go, it would be nice if there’s some nature around.