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Preview image of work. generative digital media work on computer, with custom software,  32 Questions for DeRay Mckesson, created for the Bowdoin College Museum of Art 30112


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32 Questions for DeRay Mckesson, created for the Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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R. Luke DuBois (Morristown, New Jersey, September 10, 1975 - )


32 Questions for DeRay Mckesson, created for the Bowdoin College Museum of Art

Creation Date



Time-based Media

Creation Place

North America, United States

Medium and Support

generative digital media work on computer, with custom software

Credit Line

Museum Purchase, Lloyd O. and Marjorie Strong Coulter Fund


This artwork may be under copyright. For further information, please consult the Museum’s Copyright Terms and Conditions.

Accession Number


DeRay Mckesson (b. 1985), a Bowdoin alumnus (Class of 2007) is an American civil rights activist, and one of the key figures in the Black Lives Matter Movement. He is also an inveterate user of Twitter as a platform for activism and advocacy, with some 270,000 tweets and a million followers to his name as of 2021, the year in which his alma mater will award him an honorary doctorate. His work around social justice, community organization, and police and community relations have won him praise as a strong voice for change. Penetrating into the very nature of Mckesson’s outreach to the public, DuBois’s portrait combines an interview of Mr. Mckesson, using questions provided by students at Bowdoin, and shot on high-definition video by the artist, with the Twitter messages that have galvanized his supporters. By creating an edited database of topical clips, DuBois enables comments from Mckesson’s interview to reference similar themes from his social media archive, with his tweets appearing as a cloud of words on a second screen. Through this portrait of one of Bowdoin’s most significant recent alumni, DuBois addresses a critical moment in our struggle for racial equality in the 21st century and lays bare the structure and the content of the information that have helped mobilize efforts to promote opportunity and respect for all members of our increasingly diverse society. Director of Photography: Aaron Henderson Assistant Camera: Leslie Martinez Assistant to the Director: Ayanna Seals Production Assistant: LaJuné McMillan Studio Assistant: Alessandra Urso Special thanks to Ashely Bomboka ’16, President, Bowdoin African American Society, and to Daniel Mejia-Cruz, President, Bowdoin Student Government, for their work in compiling questions for DeRay Mckesson submitted by fellow Bowdoin students. Sincere thanks to each student who contributed to this effort.

Object Description

Following are questions for DeRay submitted by Bowdoin students that formed the basis for the portrait. (as noted in Anne Goodyear's 2/15/2021 e-mail - see Curators Notes)
Questions for DeRay Mckesson
Chase Savage ‘16: Is there a moment or event in your life that has defined your outlook on the world?
Carlie Rutan ‘19: Will the Black Lives Matter movement be the catalyst for real change in our country including the improvement of this country’s underfunded public school education, the elimination of police brutality particularly against people of color and the reduction in the concentration of poverty in our inner cities?
• How can white people work to be allies of peers of color without burdening those of color? I have been told to go out and educate myself, but I feel that it is not enough to only become other words, how can we help the cause?
Jenna Scott ‘19: If you could bring back any person from history to have a conversation with or ask their advice, who would it be and why?
John Arnholz ‘19: How do you plan to advance the Black Lives Matter movement through running to be Mayor of Baltimore?
• Is there any specific Bowdoin professor who inspired you to pursue your present career?
• What privilege do Bowdoin students receive by attending the College? And how can one understand that privilege and utilize it to pursue change?
Reed Fernandez ‘17: When is the most defeated you have felt during your time as an activist?
Andrew Millar ‘16: What do you view as the greatest difference between activism that comes from within an established institution (i.e. a non-profit or elected office) and activism that takes a more organic form (i.e. protesting)?
Jacob Russell ‘17: If elected Mayor, how do you hope win the support of the Baltimore PD given the adversarial model of activism you have taken with the police in the past? • Kristin Bishop ‘18: If there was one piece of advice from your experiences that you could give to students and young people who are getting ready to face the world and become leaders in addressing some of the most challenging and pressing issues of today, what would that be?
Quincy Leech ‘17: What drives you? From where do you derive your strength?
• Ta-Nehisi Coates talks about the everyday insecurity of the "black body." What can the
average student do to mitigate this feeling?
• Where do you see this country in 20 years with regards to race relations?
• What is your hope for the next generation with regards to race relations?
• If you could do it all again, would you do anything differently?
Shinhee Kang ‘18: How did your experience working as a teacher of school administrator affect your work/activism?
Luke von Maur ’16: How has your Bowdoin education affected your career?
Clare McInerney ‘18: In response to the hashtag "#GoHomeDeray" that
followed the Charleston Church shooting, you claimed that “racism is alive and well in places like South Carolina, and in towns across America.” Did you feel that Racism was alive and well in your time here at Bowdoin?
Duncan Cannon ‘18: How would you compare issues of race at Bowdoin with other colleges and the world at large?
• What are the first steps you would take to "transform" Baltimore if elected mayor?
• Do you think events occurring today have a larger overall impact on the issues of race compared to the Civil Rights movement of the 1960's?
Benjamin Painter ‘19: I am a white male from an extremely homogeneous town. I had never seen or really thought about race until I came to Bowdoin. How should
I learn about the racism experienced by my peers? I don't want to single out my black friends and make them feel like they have to explain their experience in order to educate me. However, I feel like the longer I stay ignorant, the longer I am potentially part of the problem.
Anna Bradley Webb ‘16: What do you think are the most important steps for our next president to take against racial inequality?
Danny Miro-Chinea ‘19: What was the turning point in the Black Lives Matter movement and/or in your personal life that made you realize that activism was your calling?
David Levine ‘16: How has your time on BSG affected your worldview and activism after college?
Arindam Jurakhan ‘17: I often feel it is difficult to connect with the Black community even though I am a person of color because the degree of oppression is much greater for Black people. How would you advise me to approach this issue?
Arianna Cameron ‘16: What does your mayoral race mean for your work as an activist? Can you be both an activist and a politician?
Kevin Hernandez ‘18: What is your opinion on policing-language?
• What are some ways to address lack of diversity within leadership positions?
• What or who inspires you?
• Where do you see the #BlackLivesMatters movement in the next 10 years?
• Khelsea Gordon ‘19: To what extent did your Bowdoin experience shape your drive for activism?
• As it pertains to social media, what limitations do you find in using it for activism?
• How awesome is it being 1 of 10 people Beyoncé follows on Twitter?

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