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Introducing....Genre Urban Arts

Meet Nakeysha Roberts Washington another Cipher starter. She is pushing the pen to the limit. Through 'pop-up' events and a regular publication, Nakeysha is obviously on a mission. This is only an introduction for some, but wanted to catch everyone up on the conversation - please share on your social networks to keep the conversation growing! Comment, repost and add on! Genre Urban Arts is a Collective Conversation!

Your work and outreach is becoming more and more visible in the community, what is one fun fact people would NEVER guess about Nakeysha?

I am a complete introvert acting as an extrovert in public situations. I prefer the company of myself and sometimes when I am thinking my inner voice is so loud that I can not hear people speaking to me. I dislike small talk & do not watch tv.

What was the motivation behind starting Genre Urban Arts and who is it for?

The motivation behind Genre: Urban Arts is the innate need of the human to create. We exist within a social structure that can, for many, diminish the space in which to create and incapacitate a free mind to construct a creation. Genre: Urban Arts is a reminder to one to live in his or her creativity and a space in which one can to connect with other creatives and display the products of creativity.

Why do you care about providing a platform for creatives?

I work with the community. I am a teacher for MPS, and I know that my students are the most brilliant people that I have ever met. They get to be creative to an extent as highschoolers. Then we send them to the "real world". There they have to throw the things they love away to have "sensible" careers where they will make the money required to supply basic necessities. I think this is true for people across the United States and has been for a long time. Those who have the courage to break free from this construct do. Those who have privilege do. Those who do not see creative endeavors as a "real job" most likely will not pursue creativity because it is not practical. We must change our paradigms and begin to acknowledge creativity as a necessity and not something that is extraordinary. 

What is one of the most alarming things you have learned in your line of work at as an Educator/Teacher in MPS?

Our kids are traumatized. I notice an increased number of students having panic attacks and not being able to manage stress. It worries me. When a student comes to me in the midst of a panic attack, I use meditative breathing techniques to help them recover. We need to work to love our kids harder. We love them. Of course, but we need to wrap around them more. We need a strengthened community for our children. They seem like adults. They are in adult bodies, but they are still learning, growing and they need our guidance.

What are your hopes for the future of Milwaukee Public Schools?

I hope that we get fair funding. I hope that we can retain experienced educators. I hope that we listen to our educators who work with the kids daily. I hope that we acknowledge that school cannot fix all of the ailments that society has created.

Who would be a 'dream cover feature' in your publication?

I do not have one. I have many. There are so many artists whose work are amazing that I do cannot of good conscious select one.  

Now feel free to get like Nykeysha, get with Nykeysha.


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