If you use enough colors, you can create a beautiful world.
Since the beginning of pandemic, Artists of all sorts have been tagged “Nonessential”. That term has caused a great amount of damage to my heart & desire to create. Over the years, there are always comments “oh you’re an artist …what is your REAL job”. The offhanded comments became extremely loud to me after having my art business, my REAL job, was labeled as NONESSENTIAL. I really have questioned what’s the point anymore??? Even though people are complaining their jobs that were able to be remote (not shutdown like the Arts) & they could not go to concerts or games or museums or theaters…. But those are “just” entertainment / nonessential…. But those create mental health….Artists were & still shutdown. My muse has disappeared. I am numb. I keep trying to move forward. I pushed myself to applying for an art project, which I really wanted to do. In October 2021, Atlantic City Arts Foundation accepted my artwork for their 7th “Chalk About AC” event. ACAF makes artists have purpose, meaning & financially support us. ACAF want to lift the community up through Art. They know we artists have bills too. I was nervous to do a Live work. The other artists are very talented. De’von Downes, Amanda Auble & Amanda Klinger (myself) were chosen to do Live Art with chalk. We all began to create. I noticed both De’von & I were becoming quite “turquoise blue” from our chalk. I asked him if I could take a photo of our chalky hands. He knew why too. We knew we were there for a purpose. As the day went on, people walking by & complimenting us on all of our drawings. One gentleman, Brian, stood out to me. He began to speak. I passed him pen & paper explaining I am Deaf & would love to listen to what he had to say. He happily wrote his words. I kept his written words to remind me. Art is Essential.
Brian’s words: “I’m appreciative of the beauty of your art in the midst of the pain around the US in the city. Thank you. “
My Open Letter to Brian:
Dear Brian, I see you. I listened to your heart’s words. I heard every word. My heart is sad too. Your words beautifully described the truth of our unbalanced world. Your words were heartfelt & kind. You gave my artwork true purpose. You gave it meaning. Even though I, too, have much sadness inside, it does not stop me from wanting to make people smile. You reminded me what purpose feels like again. Thank you for words. I wish you happiness & health.
Everyone, Happy New Year!
Choose Kindness. Lift People Up!
If you are able, donate to Atlantic City Arts Foundation or Atlantic City Boys & Girls Club. “FOR BRIAN”
@acaf @njstatecouncilofthearts @southjersetarts @artpridenj @divinedownes @whattheshellarts @silentartisland @paintapotlbinj @artmatters @artistsworktoo