Artwork by Alima Hill-Tekeyeva

The Takeback Podcast was a passion project Jess started with her best friend and long-time music collaborator Angelica De Anda to elevate and amplify the voices of women of color creatives.

Together, Jess and Angelica interviewed several women of color creators across many artistic disciplines to explore how their racial identities and cultural upbringings have shaped their creative pursuits. They released a total of 14 episodes between June 2022 and December 2022.

While the podcast is no longer in active production, Jess and Angelica remain deeply passionate about amplifying and celebrating artists of color. They believe there is much work to be done to create true equity and inclusion in the arts sector, and they are committed to doing their part to make that happen.

WAYS YOU CAN SUPPORT women of color creatives in your community today:

1. Amplify their stories and successes.
Whether that's by sharing their content on social media or bringing their names up when you're in a roomful of people who can help them ascend the ladder of opportunity, do what you can to get them and their work noticed.

2. Purchase their products, services, and art.
It's no secret that artists, in general, are severely unpaid and undervalued in today's society. If you have the means to do so, please buy WOC-made products, art, and services, and encourage your friends and family to do the same.   

3. Actively commit to long-term learning, reflection, and action.
Racial equity work requires resilience and persistence. Thought and action. It's a marathon, not a sprint. We must enter this work with a posture of humility, empathy, and a willingness to get uncomfortable.

If you've never really thought about the relationship between DEI (diversity/equity/inclusion) and art, there are several things you can do to educate yourself. Read books and articles, listen to podcasts, follow thought leaders on this subject on social media, and seek to really understand the stories of people who are marginalized. Take time to reflect on your own role in the system, and identify where you might be complicit. Then, when you're ready, get involved in your local community and support (through your time, money, etc.) initiatives that seek to create sustainable, non-performative change.

And if you're a member of the creative economy, incorporate equity practices into your business and/or leadership model. Who knows? By doing so, you might be supporting the next greatest artist of our generation.