Maria J Hackett

Toa Of Jamiva
Location: brooklyn
Biography: As a Brooklyn based artist, Maria J Hackett uses her photography to explore individuals of various backgrounds and cultures who are often misrepresented throughout the media. With portraiture, documentary and captured movement, she sets out to... MORE
Public Story
Toa Of Jamiva
Copyright Maria J Hackett 2022
Updated Jun 2020
Topics Activism, Black Lives Matter, Black Men, BlackLivesMatter, Boxing, Brooklyn, Community, Documentary, Essays, Photography, Photojournalism, Racism, Spotlight

Tao Of Jamiva. 2013

Mustafa, a coach of 35 years, trains young black men within his Jamiva Boxing Camp at Judas Brothers boxing gym. Being familiar with the streets, he disciplines those willing, keeping many out the streets from drugs, violence and death, hoping to pass on his knowledge. For some, he serves as a powerful mentor and father figure. Getting closer with Mustafa and his boxing camp allowed me to show how this lifestyle has helped impact their lives as well as what goals they wish to accomplish.  These young men dedicate their time coming from both school and work to train with Mustafa. Some simply come in to check in and say hi, as this has become their family - another home.

In recognizing the unfair views placed on black people often being negative, rather than spending more time on the positive, I deeply became more eager to share this story. Overtime, I became more disgusted of the selective and false narratives displayed through mainstream media, in white washed stolen culture as well as the commercial world. Where’s the hope for the young ones to see if all they see is negative. This project was what I hoped to be the start to shedding light on one of many unknown positive activities within communities that aren’t as fortunate.

Documenting young men as they train under Mustafa would show the good that is happening in the East New York Community and many others like it. He has great passion and good intentions to discipline these passionate individuals through a powerful art form, requiring focus, strength, self- respect and a strong mind.

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Toa Of Jamiva by Maria J Hackett
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