The project didn’t end there. In the year that has passed since Brown’s death, Barghi has been illustrating and tweeting her own creative depictions of the last words spoken by slain black male victims of state violence in the U.S. The result is a haunting tribute to the dead and a heartbreaking reminder of the toll American racism takes daily on black families and communities.
In many ways, #LastWords has assumed a life of its own, she says. Artists and musicians have reached out to her about creating similar series’ focused on other topics, like the war in Yemen. Activists in Ferguson have also spoken to her about amplifying the last words spoken by black women who have died at the hands of American police.
“I really want other people to continue this work,” Barghi says. “First, I’m not black, which I realize influences my perspective. Black pain [in the U.S.] is very real. So the first thing I try to do is educate myself, build an awareness.”
In fact without even giving her any credit (have seen them tweet credit later on), but they still haven’t added her in the description for the video Al-Jazeera featured them, and then put up a gallery of newer ones below at another time:
From Michael Brown to Trayvon Martin #LastWords uses heartbreakingly simple illustration to raise the issue of police brutality against black Americans. For more shocking stories of true crime, […]