Photographs by Elias Williams
Featuring: King Tito Love, Jay, V.I, Pete, The Vartist, El, Roy and Mike
Presented in partnership by United Photo Industries, NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment and Visible Ink
New York Photographer Elias Williams was tasked this summer to capturing the creativity and leadership of men who have been harmed by gun violence who are all part of the OPEN DOORS arts and justice initiative is based at NYC Health + Hospitals/Coler, a long-term care facility on Roosevelt Island, where many of the members live and work. The members of the group use storytelling, hip-hop and spoken word to challenge audiences to combat the injustice that breeds violence in New York City neighborhoods.
The members of the organization, some of them known as “Reality Poets”, return to the neighborhoods where members grew up to inform young people about rarely considered consequences of gun violence, and to encourage them to become positive change makers.
This collaboration proudly produced and commissioned by United Photo Industries with support from the NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, has been inspired by the Visible Ink program, a writing program for Memorial Sloan Kettering patients, and Open Doors in collaboration with NYC Health + Hospitals / Coler's Department of Therapeutic Recreation.