I was introduced to Franco’s art recently and was impressed with his use of 1960’s and 1970’s culture, politics, entertainment, and sports imagery in his work. I particularly dig his unique spin on the Fist Afro Pick, which back in the day represented Black Power and the Revolution. I am glad to have Franco’s art as a part of our Aesthetic Grooves blog. I hope you enjoy.
An artist is someone who creates art. An activist is one who engages in intentional behaviors to bring about social, political, economic, or environmental change. Through his illustration, graphic art, and painting, Franco synthesizes art and activism to form a genre all his own— visual activism. Franco’s visual activism embodies his strong urge to create and sustain justice and opens up the space for truth to prevail. By doing so, the characters and images he cre-ates grab more than your attention; they spark consciousness.
At once easy to digest and thought-provoking, Franco’s work makes statements about the laudable triumphs and continued struggles of those who have fought and who continue to fight for social equalities. Franco’s bold and engaging aesthetic can be most recently seen in his pop art examining culture through the lens of popular Latino and Asian food products. Ad- ditionally, music is always a strong influence, whether hip-hop, funk or rare groove.
Franco received his Bachelor of Arts in Art at North Carolina Central University with a concen- tration in Visual Communications and a Certificate in Multimedia at The School of Communi- cation Arts. Franco lives and creates in Durham, North Carolina. While some may claim that life imitates art, Franco is dedicated to art changing life.
Art allows me to transform my illustrations and graphic designs into social commentary and I am a more passionate, more serene, more balanced, happier, more productive and more satisfied man because of it. I am an artist who has gone beyond the canvas, the core of my formal training, in order to pay respect to my inspirations—music, equal rights movements, and popular culture. My use of bright colors and the iconic fist pick, symbols of revolution and progress, grace the pages of my art, as I master my craft. I am an artist whose work is a tan- gerine thread, nourishing the soul, making my art distinct, yet relatable to many.
I hope that my art will let those who view it relax. By finding an ironic comfort in my use of bold lines and bright colors, my art is designed to gently, but vigorously liberate minds from the bonds of conventional thinking.