‘We The People’ posters by Shepard Fairey.

“Our criminal justice system has swallowed up too many people I love.” –Michael K. Williams

Actor and activist, Michael K. Williams, who was featured in The Untitled Magazine’s Legendary Issue 7 will be honored at Young New Yorker’s (YNY) fifth annual Silent Art Annual on May 10, benefiting the grassroots arts-diversion program for teenagers facing criminal charges as adults in New York. Williams will be in attendance to the event which features a silent auction of artwork from eighty different artists, including Kara Walker and Shepard Fairey, curated by Layqa Nuna Yawar, Ann Lewis, Ché Morales. Shepard Fairey in partnership with the Amplifier Foundation will be gifting his famous We The People posters to every winning bid. The auction will be facilitated by Paddle 8, opening online April 26th and closing at midnight on May 10.

Young New Yorkers (YNY) provides court-mandated arts programs to justice involved young people in Brooklyn. New York is one of only two states in the U.S. that arrests and sentences 16- and 17-year-olds as adults. The criminal court gives eligible 16- and 17-year-old defendants the option to participate in a YNY program rather than spend time in jail, or incur other adult criminal justice sanctions. Upon successful completion of the program, a participant’s case is dismissed and sealed and they avoid a lifelong criminal record at as young as 16. To date, 100% of more than 250 participants have successfully graduated from YNY programs. YNY’s ultimate goal is to empower participants to transform the criminal justice system through their own creative voices.

Tickets are available now for the benefit auction event, or bid on artwork online at Paddle 8.

Support arts programs around the city! Check out ProjectArt Presents: My Kid Could Do That on April 28. The benefit exhibition celebrates ProjectArt’s mission and creativity by displaying childhood artwork created by some of today’s most highly esteemed artists.

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