By Chelzea Worrent
Daniel Patrick Jr. is a sophomore here at Purchase. He’s Brooklyn born and raised studying interdisciplinary graphic design and printmaking with an interest in psychology. Students that don’t immediately know him might recognize him as the founder of Purchase's TBSC: The Black Student Collective, an organization that showcases art made by Black Purchase students.
The idea for the collective was already brewing in his mind when he first arrived at Purchase in 2021, but it wasn’t put into fruition until February of this year. Previously, there already had been a Black student collective, but when Patrick looked for any members and connections to it, he was met with dead ends.
The Black Student Collective is, in Patrick's words, “A way to highlight Black artists, for Black artists.” The Instagram page mainly posts art made by Black students of various majors whose personal accounts are tagged within the captions.
There were a few reasons why Patrick decided to create the TBSC, but one of his biggest reasons for setting it in motion was an overwhelming lack of Black representation in the arts. Patrick was barely seeing Black people in his classes, and in the cases where he did, the topic was always surrounding Black trauma and suffering. While there is an abundance of art that showcases Black pride, joy, and success, Patrick wasn’t seeing it. So, he decided that he’d take it upon himself to create that vision and the space for that subset of Black art to be seen and heard at Purchase.
“The experience has been positive overall,” Patrick said. In his time running TBSC he's met with, and learned about, many other Black artists. His biggest challenges have been getting artists to give him artwork to add to the collective and helping them break out of their shells.
An artist that recently submitted their art to TBSC is Lindana Pierre, a drawing and painting major. They felt welcomed by the exposure and support that Black artists receive at the TBSC, and were glad to have a space “for us, by us." The process of getting their art submitted was fairly easy, the hardest part being choosing what piece they wanted to have displayed. Pierre says the Black Student Collective is like home to them.
“I love being around Black people and celebrating who we are," they said. “I like the fact that no matter where I go or if I feel out of place, I’ll always be supported by my fellow Black peers.”
One of Patrick's goals for the future of TBSC is to make the Collective’s presence more well known, and establish a bi-annual art exhibition. He still has time left at Purchase, and says that before he leaves he’d like to find a successor, one who advocates for Black artists, and is knowledgable on Black culture and artwork.
If you’re a Black artist reading with an interest in showcasing your art, or simply would just like to view artwork made by Black students here at Purchase, check out The Black Student Collect at @tbsc_purchase on Instagram.