“Portrait of Kimani Gray” Remembers Slain Teenager Through Art
Much of the approach to covering young people killed before their time focuses on highlighting the injustice of the circumstances in which they were murdered, but this documentary focuses on remembering life. Portrait of Kimani Gray is an extended interview with the art teacher of Kimani Gray, a 16-year-old killed by police in Flatbush, Brooklyn nearly one year ago. The first half of the documentary remembers Kimani’s personality in and out of class, his artistic talent, and how the students and employees of the school were affected by his death. Numerous artworks, including the sculpture Kimani was working on at the time of his death, are featured in the latter half. The documentary stands as especially important since mainstream news media rarely (if ever) allows space for sustained reflection on a tragedy like the murder of Kimani.
The filmmakers are also working on a longer documentary about the protests that ignited surrounding Kimani’s death.