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CINCINNATI, Ohio – Mixed media artist Michael Coppage has received dozens of letters written by angry white people for his use of white monkeys to depict Caucasian Americans.

“It started a few weeks ago when I started posting progress shots to my Instagram account,” Michael Coppage said. (@prosper_jones_)

The letters include racial slurs, threats of violence to both Coppage and his family as well as criticism for stoking the flames of racism, Coppage said.

Coppage has created a series of paintings entitled American Plus where he paints white monkeys in precarious scenarios with African-American men. Two of the paintings are currently hanging on the 3rd and 4th floors of the 21c Museum Hotel in downtown Cincinnati. The paintings depict a white monkey sitting atop a black man’s head with a confederate flag as a backdrop implying the black man has been oppressed in some way. The second painting titled Charlottesville has received the most attention. It depicts a mob of angry white baboons. The image is a social commentary about a white nationalist rally that took place in Charlottesville, Va Aug. 12, 2018. The rally erupted into violence and left a young woman dead.

“My work is a social commentary about living in America. I’m not racist. America is. My paintings are about the appropriation of African-American culture and it being used to demonize black men,” Coppage said.

Coppage’s paintings will be on display at 21c Museum through June.


 




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I’ve met the most progressive African American men -“Ballers,” Black Doctors (completing residency), current and retired athletes, young executives/ transplant (top level graduates that are sent here for work at one of our big corporations like P&G, Toyota, etc) and overall high net-worth Black men at OTR Live/Treehouse and MIXX (no longer in business) in Cincinnati, Ohio. I've met and carried on long term friendships and are Forever friends with at least four. Most of these guys seem to want more out of a relationship because they are focused on their careers and have less time to play. They still want a$s like most men (LOL)-but they tend to be a little more serious. These type of guys party at the places mentioned.


Some of the more flashy guys hang at Rusconi's on 6th Street on Fridays. This is a pizza place (Bomb pizza)....It's fun there... I just prefer my guys to be lame, quiet and not flashy.


I've met the most White & Indian Doctors (and more Ballers) at Scene across from the Aronoff Center. The black men that frequent here generally like white or other races.


White Male Sugar Daddies are in abundance at Jeff Ruby’s (Downtown) on Friday and Saturday.... and also Embers near Madeira/Kenwood on Wednesday for Happy Hour. These places are upscale restaurants but during happy hour they have live jazz and men come after work to unwind and catch up with colleagues. This is a great place to network. I've heard many business deals take place...at least the talk of setting meetings for business deals.




I’ve met the most career/professional guys at Revel OTR Urban Winery (Check the online schedule for good dates-sometimes this place is a ghost town), BJ’s restaurant in Tri-County in the bar area if a good game is on. These guys tend to be entry level professionals and/or new to the city, looking for new places to go.


I've met Pilots and Flight Attendants in the airport of course at or near the pilot’s lounge and Lunken Airport in the summer. You're lucky if you come across an African American pilot-you only meet them by chance. Actually, I met my black pilot friend online. They tend to be super focused on their career and/or already married.

Poker players-The casino-duh. Go to the bar in the middle-from experience, they seem to watch that area. These guys are ok if they don't lose often. They spend long hours at the casino but tend to be generous.


I love for my dates to take me to Coppington’s (inside of Hotel Covington), Top Golf, All of Jeff Ruby’s restaurants-they have the best steak-No other steak houses in Cincinnati compares, Boca, Aster on Fourth but these are also great places to socialize with friends.


I hang with the girls (and/or my guy friends) for a weekend recap or just to hang out and talk at Righteous Room (Happy Hour), Lou Vino, Sotto, UnWind Bar, E & O Kitchen, Taste of Belgium, Fridays at the bar (especially for drinks).


I send my guy co-workers (All nationalities) to Kickbacks on Vine Street for Happy Hour.


Good places for Group Dates-Ichiban in Mt. Lookout on a late night.


Best authentic Indian-New Kirschna in Sharonville.


Best Authentic Mexican – Mi Terra in Tri-County.


Ok, I guess we do have things to do in Cincinnati!


In the end-we meet people everywhere but we generally ATTRACT what we are.


Many Blessings

-Vee






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Meditation to me means transforming the mind. I use the practices/techniques to develop concentration, ease my anxiety, gain clarity of things I’ve been seeking, and emotional positivity.


I started meditating maybe….4-5 years ago after challenging many things that I was conditioned to believe throughout my life.


My anxiety returned, and I also felt that the world was suffering, and I wanted a hiding place for my thoughts and my fears.


My thoughts with meditation were-I can’t control what was going on around me, but I could control my own state of mind for the better. I was not seeking a new religion and didn’t connect it with religion; instead I wanted to reach a new level of spirituality.

I did however research the practice within my religion (Christianity) and found that Christian meditation is a form of prayer in which a structured attempt is made to get in touch with and deliberately reflect upon the revelations of GOD and I wanted to connect with GOD on a more personal basis.

Unfortunately, I never felt connected to GOD while in church, so this was perfect because it was more private and between GOD and I. Basically-I could talk and listen to GOD without judgment or getting anyone else involved.

I felt that I started making more conscience decisions and I focused more on living in the moment steaming from thinking more clearly. Which is something we often forget to do as our daily life takes control of our being.


“The word meditation comes from the Latin word meditari, which means to concentrate. Christian meditation is the process of deliberately focusing on specific thoughts (e.g. a biblical scene involving Jesus and the Virgin Mary) and reflecting on their meaning in the context of the love of God.” -Wiki

New Age meditations are often influenced by Eastern philosophy, mysticism, Yoga, Hinduism and Buddhism. New Age meditation as practiced by the early hippies is regarded for its techniques of blanking out the mind and releasing oneself from conscious thinking. This is often aided by repetitive chanting of a mantra, or focusing on an object. New Age meditation evolved into a range of purposes and practices, from serenity and balance to access to other realms of consciousness to the concentration of energy in group meditation to the supreme goal of samadhi (a state of intense concentration achieved through meditation. In Hindu yoga this is regarded as the final stage, at which union with the divine is reached), as in the ancient yogic practice of meditation.

O.Mah.Gah-it was not easy starting out. I would sit in a quiet room, hoping to feel and hear something. Nothing happened!

Next I started my meditation sessions with a prayer for whatever I wanted to focus on. It helped me focus more and my mind that was previously running wild-calmed. But then I would fall asleep,lol. I later found out that this was ok and I was on my way to learning to focus at a more attentive state.


I started out with meditating in my car for 5 minutes a day, then 10 minutes, then 20 minutes.


My car was the only place that I had alone time, so I used that time to clear my mind. Now I meditate for at least 2 hours on Sunday. During this time, I am praying, sitting quiet and clearing my mind. I do this first as soon as I awake or if I am having trouble sleeping, I meditate before bed.

I use this time to release any anxieties, frustrations and any worries that I may have. If my anxiety is at a high level, I drink a glass of red wine to calm my mind and focus more. *Don’t follow my lead-this is my way of calming my brain and articulating my thoughts from my subconscious.

I sit in an upright position against a wall for back support and I cross my legs as you see in pictures. Now I don’t stay this way for two hours (that would hurt) but I do sit in the stance as long as I can. If I have an emergency meditation session (when I can’t sleep, have a difficult task or I’m feeling super frustrated) I light candles.

I rarely use chants-unless I am participating in a Chopra Center 21-day meditation, challenge-but the chants rarely work for me. I lose concentration and it defeats the purpose I am working towards.

I’ve found that using meditation helps me to recognize things I wouldn’t normally notice daily. I think more before I react, and I have peace that others will never take away. It’s my secret weapon in this fast world and it keeps me from becoming upset at things that I can’t control.

My thoughts. My Way. My Inner Peace.

#Meditation #SoulFood #SuperSoul #SuperSoulSunday #FindingMyPeace #InnerPeace #ChopraCenter #Spirituality #GodIsLove


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