This Raw Cold Life

This raw cold life is a beautiful thing. —Mos Def

My name is Shaun and I make paintings, drawings, and poems. My art is a reaction (one of many) to the countless and varied inspirations I encounter. This is an informal collection of such things, too scattered and far-reaching to be condensed into a single label.

See my art:

Ask/Tell me something.




  1. Spoken word artist Lemon Andersen comes to terms with his dark past (video)


    The Tony Award winner is the subject of the new documentary film, Lemon.


    Life hasn’t always been roses for Lemon Andersen

    The three-time felon turned award-winning performer has had to fight personal demons for years, and a chunk of it has been turned into a new documentary film.

    Read More

    I can’t wait to see this. Lemon’s been one of my favorite artists of any type since whenever that was Def Poetry came out. Dude’s said some of the realest shit I’ve ever heard.

    (Source: thisisfusion)

  2. Brazil troops and police raid Rio shantytown in clean-up drive | The Guardian

    I just hope they seriously care about this and it won’t be neglected after the World Cup and Olympics. I know that the traffickers have their evils, but you could still go to Rocinha, Vidigal, and other favelas for parties or whatever and not have problems. But who knows what’s going to happen now when the police take these communities. I feel more comfortable around gangsters with guns than around police with guns. By some estimates, Rocinha has 250,000 people. That’s like taking over an entire city in one pre-dawn raid…

  3. K'naan - Returning to Somalia After 20 Years -

    I hoped that my presence would let me shine a light into this darkness. Maybe spare even one life, a life equal to mine, from indifferently wasting away. But I am no statesman, nor a soldier. Just a man made fortunate by the power of the spotlight. And to save someone’s life I am willing to spend some of that capricious currency called celebrity.

  4. SLAM ONLINE | » The Real Mr. West

    Says Delonte: “Parents come to me and say, ‘Thank you. My son’s bipolar and nobody understands him, and it just means so much for you to speak on it.’ I hear that so much from people, it’s unreal.”

  5. The Shame of College Sports | Taylor Branch | The Atlantic

    “Scholarship athletes are already paid,” declared the Knight Commission members, “in the most meaningful way poss-ible: with a free education.” This evasion by prominent educators severed my last reluctant, emotional tie with imposed amateurism. I found it worse than self-serving. It echoes masters who once claimed that heavenly salvation would outweigh earthly injustice to slaves. In the era when our college sports first arose, colonial powers were turning the whole world upside down to define their own interests as all-inclusive and benevolent. Just so, the NCAA calls it heinous exploitation to pay college athletes a fair portion of what they earn.

  6. The Impossible, Inevitable Redemption of Michael Vick | GQ

    Vick must constantly play this balancing act, reconciling a desire to say what he wants with what he knows he can’t. In person, you can see these cracks in disposition; there’s tension because part of him wants to open up. But over the phone, I can tell it’s the fortified Vick. In order to stick to the PR plan, he must make himself as uninteresting as possible.

  7. “The Legacy of Bin Laden” by Immortal Technique

    Well worth your time to read the whole thing, but here are some fragments of it…

    Some secrets are best kept secrets in the interest of national security. However, if national security means protecting the abuse of power and the negligence of authority, then it is not the security of a nation that is being protected, but the indulgences of the corrupt.

    For nothing damages the American pride more than to acknowledge that underneath the stars and stripes, we can be just wicked as everyone else in the world.

    So, now, the question becomes, what methods of inhumane deeds, what torture that we have overlooked waits to face us in the future? What rotting half cooked dead body have we made someone cry over and then excuse with a date rape phrase like “collateral damage”? Who is waiting for revenge in the future for the 9/11 that we have visited upon their lives.

    The U.S. and its allies will downplay his roll, saying he just raised money, that he was not a great fighter. But he was a link, and a recognizable one that was considered as an asset to the CIA and to other intelligence services like the Pakistani ISI. In other words, he did to the Russians what we would call terrorism if it were done to us now.

    In the end, he chose his own fate, but I believe the radicalization of Islam, brought about by colonialism and harnessed by the Cold War was a factor.

    But if I sat back and thought about it, and realized how my struggle for justice killed a hundred times as many innocent people who had nothing to do with it, I wouldn’t feel proud of my achievement. I would think about how I had just created a hundred thousand people around the world to feel like I did when my loved one was killed. I would remember that while the crowds around me were cheering and celebrating. I would think that the people whose families have been destroyed as a result of this war would feel hurt by my jubilation, the way we were angry at Arabs when the news purposefully played that video of Palestinians from 1992 falsely celebrating after 9/11. (Call me a conspiracy theorist, but I don’t think that was done by accident.)

    But don’t worry, you’re not alone, there are many men like you left in the world, and some of them even used to be your friends. After all, this is America, and we only kill our friends.

  8. Bigger picture: West expresses himself through art

    The irony of the player who sees so much on the court is that there is a side to him that many don’t see. Underneath the exterior of a feisty guard cloaked in tattoos is an introspective artist who turns inward to cope with a series of obstacles he has faced.

  9. NBA playoffs 2011: How Rajon Rondo got his confidence back for Boston Celtics - ESPN Boston

    "I won’t say that nobody can guard me, but when I’m looking at a guy, I don’t really see the player in front of me,” Rondo said. "I’m looking at the second line of the defense, because that’s where I’m headed.

    "In transition? Definitely, I don’t think anyone can stay in front of me.”

  10. The Making of Mobb Deep's "The Infamous" | Complex

    This piece goes through all the tracks off one of my favorite albums ever