A Portrait of True Red2016
8:40 min
Video, color, sound
A Portrait of True Red is a first-person narrative told by Sam Jones, a fictional character who merges with a pair of Nike’s “True Red Vampire” sneakers. Jones weaves together historical accounts and contemporary texts from numerous sources, including Tacky’s Rebellion, a slave uprising in Jamaica (1760); police brutality towards Black Liberation Army member Assata Shakur; violence against factory workers in contemporary China; and excerpts from Nike advertising copy and product reviews.

Sources: Nike Commercials various; Nike Dunk Low SB True Red (vampire); YouTube reviews; various historical accounts of Tacky rebellion in Jamaica 1760; The Things That Fly in the Night: Female Vampires in Literature of Circum-Caribbean and African diaspora, Giselle Liza Anatol, 2015; Assata Shakur in her own words; open letter to Pope John Paul II; 1998 Army of one commercial “Fight back,” 2003; Chinese Shoe Factory Workers Strike in Guangdong Province, NTDV, 2011; Chinese Labor Strike: 5,000 Workers Strike At Factory Making Shoes For Nike, Timberland, Police Dogs Deployed, Kenneth Cole, International Business Times, 2015; 30,000 Chinese Factory Workers Strike Against Nike Manufacturer, the Real News Network, 2014; Hansae to build apparel factory in Haiti, The Korea Times, 2015.

Cinematographer, special effects, and sound mix: Sharad Patel
Colorist: Ryan Nquven from Huephoric
Lighting: Nad Films
Performer: Celma Neto

Included in exhibition:
A Portrait of True Red, Cranbrook Art Museum

Annotated Script of A Portrait of True Red

Image courtesy of artist
Photo: PD Rearick