I was born, raised, and still reside in my beloved city of New Orleans. The pseudonym, Ti-Rock Moore, pays homage to the late 1960s, French Quarter artist Noel Rockmore, who greatly influenced me as a child. As a young woman I fought for gay rights during the 80s and 90s, a time when there was much resistance to the movement. As gay rights gained substantial momentum, I shifted my focus to the devastating racism that still remains very pervasive in all areas of society in this country and have used it as the primary focus for my artistic practice.
Living in the South has always made racism a highly visible, salient, and uncomfortable reality. After Hurricane Katrina, extreme racism in this country was magnified ten-fold and I knew then, without reservation, that something needed to be done. I practiced privately for many years, but I emerged publicly with my protest pieces in June 2014 and have since shown at various galleries in New Orleans, L.A., Philly and Brooklyn, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, the Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans, and Art Basel in Miami. My first solo show opened in Chicago in July 2015, and the second will open in L.A. September 2016.
My artistic practice is rooted in my passions as an activist. The vast majority of my body of work is a criticism of American patriotism driven by white supremacy and the continued systemic oppression that people of color face in the United States. My specific areas of interest are in addressing the mass incarceration of young black people in America and the undeniable violence they experience at the hands of white authorities and those in their very own community. My artistic influences include: Andy Warhol, Deborah Kass, and Thorton Dial. I work primarily with mixed media and occasionally use video clips with historical significance to make my message direct.
I reference 19th century slave labor, particularly in the American South, to delineate the progression of present-day commodification of the black body. In the movement to dismantle racism, I take responsibility as a white activist to express my frustrations about the treatment of the black community in the United States. I believe, it is time for white Americans to hold accountability for and stand up to the injustices of racial oppression. With the great controversy surrounding my artwork, I continue to primarily identify as an activist with the mission to raise the consciousness of white Americans who refuse to acknowledge the persistently oppressive structures that benefit white mediocrity above all else.
This is the great moral issue of our time.
And this is why I’ve devoted my artistic practice entirely to breaking white denial and addressing social justice issues centered on racism. The notion of the artist as activist is at the root of my practice. My art is protest art and is reactive and loud and meant to elicit a higher consciousness. It should be observed as a civic tool.
White privilege, white power and white supremacy control America’s heartbeat, and our nation’s collective loss of memory, our historical amnesia is to blame. My work reflects my acute awareness of the unearned advantages my white skin holds.