Diamon Fisher on Community, Organizing, and Motherhood in Baltimore
We spoke with Diamon Fisher (art maker, community organizer, archivist, and mother) about her hometown, Baltimore. Diamon discusses what led her to become a community organizer, how she's taking a look at the archive, and how she navigates her community role while being a mother
by Akea Brionne Brown
3 weeks ago
Akea Brionne (AB): What led you to begin your work as a community organizer?
Diamon (D): What led me to begin my work as a organizer started when i entered The Baltimore Youthworks Program at 14. I remembered feeling and becoming so inspired by the woman who led the program. Aries, headstrong, determined and
embodied true leadership. Her engagement and relationship with community felt organic. Spent a few summers shadowing her. Which eventually lead me to doing youth mentorship. I also come from a very community oriented family. My mother has been a licensed daycare provider my whole life and my father is a Barber and kept me constantly engaging with community while growing up as a barbershop baby on the corner of North Avenue. "Superman's" barbershop to be exact.
AB: In addition to your community work, you co-founded Black On Bouff Sidez and founded Millennial Mamasss, can you talk about those projects and what they mean to you?
D: Black on Bouff Sidez came about as a reference to Mos Def's "Black on Both sides" album. Which happens to be one of my favorites. BOBS is a project that was bred out of the concept of wanting a virtual space and/or platform that served as a black archive. A platform that allowed BIPOC to get there fix under one umbrella through a variety of; video compilations, interviews, photographs, music. I think its important that Black people have spaces to hold black artifacts and honor legacy, digitally and physically.
Millennial Mamas came about when I was pregnant with Solar. I wanted to hold space for other mothers that were suffering from postpartum, lack of family or paternal support and needed baby and mama natural alternatives to westernized medicines. I'm still pondering on what this project means to me. Still figuring out ways to be useful to fellow millennial mamas while I figure out ways for community and mamas to be useful in my mama hood journey.
AB: As a mother, how do you balance motherhood and your creative/community pursuits? How has becoming a mother changed and/or reinforced your creative outlets?
D: Honestly, most days I have no idea how I do it lol I think its because I constantly involve my son in my creative pursuits without thinking about it. I I balance the two by knowing when to ask for support with my son from my village. Becoming a mother has allowed me to be more dedicated to creative outlets and value my creative time when I have it. Trying to balance being a mother, curator, artist and organizer can be flat out exhausting but it teaches me to get organized and prioritize creativity. Creating is my happy place but so is motherhood.
AB: What makes Baltimore unique? What keeps you excited to create and facilitate community work in this city?
D: Baltimore is a city that's resiliency overrides the violence, poverty, drug war and law enforcement. Baltimore's talent is unfiltered, peculiar, funky. What keeps me excited is the simple fact that I'm creating experiences, memories, opportunities for BIPOC in the city that I'm from. What keeps me excited is the feedback and the satisfaction that folks get whenever occupying spaces that I curate in the community.
AB: What do you hope your community with remember you for?
D: I hope the community remembers me for showing up. For creating experiences. For being a matriarch, student, teacher, friend & lover.
AB: What's your favorite food?
D: Hmmm I'm going to go with Baleadas
AB: What's one thing about you that most people probably don't know?
D: I can be shy as hell at times and honestly, I act like Garfield. Im a sleepy cat that loves to snack and hates exercising ( I blame my taurus and pisces placements).
AB: What's your sign?
AB: Who are some of your favorite musicians you're currently listening to?
Johnny Hammond Smith
Ponderosa Twins Plus One