Macon artist Charvis Harrell shares how social justice is reflected in his work

Local Macon artist Charvis Harrell speaks about his latest work, Cartoon Violence, that he created in reaction to the murder of George Floyd and inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement.


“The visible sight of so many people in the streets was a powerful thing,” he says.


In his most recent work Harrell creates an analogy between the violence Black people experience and the everyday nature of cartoons, but he makes it clear that there isn’t anything comical about it.


“It just seemed just like how cartoon violence was senseless, it seemed like the same type of thing. Just so much senseless violence on film captured and just gotten away with too,” he says.


He started painting after being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. His work often illuminates the disconnect between African American culture and self-identity with paintings of Black public figures across the decades. His newest work continues to push his audiences.


“I don’t make art to impress older people, because they already most of the time had their minds made up,” Harrell shares, “But if I can influence the way younger people think and perceive things, and that’s my whole purpose.”