Join us and Lonnie Lee of Vessel Gallery for a walking tour that examines how artists use their work as a tool of activism. Meet at 2pm at Vessel Gallery, 471 25th Street.
Today there are a host of resistance movements taking on political and social issues we face; organizing and emerging everywhere, in search of justice, filled with questions, disdain, sometimes anger or encouragement of actions, agitating intellectual philosophical dissections of democracy. These energies employ storytelling and history. In our social media-driven age we are inundated with news feeds and information, often descending into our echo chambers containing variations of accurate (or less than accurate) minute-by-minute news, poor reporting, «fake news,» investigative reporting, shock value, human interest and condition; the stories and images are used as ways to rapidly connect with viewers, create communities, and within an instant your social political concerns can be found to echo your similar interests and reflect your values.
So for Activism to exist, it is essential that an application of creative imagination exists, and that there is a movement of citizens who want to work and collaborate to make that change, sometimes even inspired by the voice of an artist.
Artists in a sense have a knack for tuning in to express thoughts and opinions of others, communities, and the collective voice. David Burke says “the artist is like a lightning bolt;” they strike and illuminate the collective consciousness and shed light on issues. That crack, that lightening bolt, descends and affects us differently than news blasted at us on the television or airwaves, on social media. On this tour we will examine several artists who put their art to work as a tool of activism. We will ponder the artistic methods they use to illicit sympathies and connections, and the degree to which their tools activate that message in their works. Hopefully we can get closer to greater understanding of how our concerns align, and further this reflection to inspire and activate your personal skill set, and be the change in your spheres of influence.
Image: ROAMING, David Burke (2017), Ink, resin, acrylic, 60” diameter