My name is Demetrius “6ixx” similien. I am a Haitian American artists and a graduate of Benedict college Columbia, SC, where I earned degree in political science. I work primarily in video collaging and performance art. This process began as an educative tool for workshops and speaking events, then grew into independent immersive environments incorporating performance, poetry, music, and collaged video narratives.
Using video installation and performance is a way for me to simplify and entertain people on complicated matters dealing with sociopolitical issues. I learned how useful this skill could be from my work traveling as an assessor for the Clinton foundation. My work as a brand ambassador and community outreach specialist gave me access to people of all walks of life, and I discovered that connections could always be made! My work as a mentor with the TRIO program, which deals with grooming first generation college students, gave me a deeper understanding of where social divides exists in regards to education and access.
These experiences in the political field enabled me to see how many different groups of people access knowledge and more importantly, how they can be overwhelmed or confused by this knowledge. The purpose of my art is to draw people in using pop culture imagery to find common ground.
6ixx and The Ugly Truth was designed to be visually appealing and mentally stimulating, to instigate the viewer to have a moment of introspection, and then cultivate conversation about their response. My work pushes the boundaries of what is comfortable. Only by pushing the boundaries of comfortability and having uncomfortable conversations with yourself can you begin to have uncomfortable conversations with the world around you. Uncomfortable conversations have always pushed our society forward.
6ixx and the Ugly Truth is my perspective as new American who wasn’t taught American values but grew up in American culture. The Ugly Truth is meant to highlight what haunts our society and is my attempt to force all that watch to marvel and appreciate the ugly world for what it is and then try to push beyond. We can’t ignore the Ugly nor turn away from it. I believe that if you brave to truly look at the Ugly Truth, you can find a beautiful answer.