Black Mamas Reclaiming Reproductive Justice

Honoring The Four Tenets of Reproductive Justice, A Black Feminist Framework

  • This Mamas Day we are celebrating Black mamahood and the Black mamas who continue to push the movement forward while recognizing the foundation of reproductive justice.

    Mamahood is not one size fits all; mamahood is expansive. But on Mother’s Day, one of the biggest commercial holidays in the United States, most depictions of mothers often reinforce traditional ideas of family and motherhood that narrowly define one way to be a family. Images often exclude mamas based on their sexual orientation, race, income, immigration status and more.

    That’s why in 2011 we created “Mamas Day” to highlight our mamas.

    This year’s theme, Black Mamas Reclaiming their Space in the Reproductive Justice Movement, celebrates Black mamahood and the Black mamas who continue to push the work forward. Black mamas are the founders of the reproductive justice framework and are the foundation of our movement.

    Read or listen to
    Alicia’s story
    Read or listen to
    Mia’s story

    2023 Artists

    Artist: Teshika Silver

    Black mamahood can be magical to some, allowing for healing and joy. Whether you’re bringing another life into the world, or you mother others by being a safe place for them to land, motherhood allows for giving deep care and receiving love and appreciation in ways that haven’t been experienced before. These pieces explore both the freedom to not give birth and the freedom to give birth in a safe environment. The magic of that is shared on a much smaller scale here, with creatures and critters that also experience these freedoms. Nature has always found a way to survive and thrive here on Earth, and humans deserve the right to procreate or not as nature always intended. As Black people and people who mother, we should be free to make natural decisions for our own bodies that feel safe and healthy for us.

    Bio: Teshika Silver has been drawing and creating since she was a child, and making a profession from it almost half her life. Art, creativity, and design is literally all she does, and because of that, the language of art is easy for her to translate visually with stunning results. She creates vivid, engaging visuals that radiate equity, love and justice. Learn more at astratesh.com.

    Read or listen to Teshika’s storyDownload art


    Artist: cozcon

    When I think of bodily autonomy I think about self-belonging— being your own guardian and north star. Venus emerged, fully realized, from the ocean, standing on a clam shell, like the sole architect of her body and spirit. We all deserve the right to navigate our worlds the same way, born from rich vastness with complete personal agency. I hope this image can serve as a reminder of that.

    Bio: cozcon is a multidisciplinary artist dedicated to broadening the visual lexicons of Black, femme and queer life. They reclaim the riches locked up in the exclusionary hubs of contemporary art, design and fashion and reinvest them in imagery reflecting the lived experiences of the marginalized and historically excluded. You can see more of them on Instagram @cozcon.

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    Artist: Ebin Lee

    My greatest privilege and joy is coming from and being surrounded by Black mamas. Love in all of our human relationships is cosmic and beyond our physical form on this planet. 

    Bio: Ebin Lee is a Portland Based artist from Chicago. They use shape and color to communicate their human experience. Learn more at ebinlee.xyz

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    Project Acknowledgements

    2023 Artists: cozcon, Teshika Silver, Ebin Lee
    Project Lead: ChaKiara Tucker
    Planning Team: Kemi Alabi, Micah Bazant, Jamila Brown, Isabella Baker, Selinda Guererro, Leslie Lopez, Prerna Sampat, Hunter Shackleford and Cindy Yang
    Mamas: Alicia Roach, Northwest Reproductive Justice Collective; Mia Cooley, xHood
    Web Design and Development: Duende