Since yesterday was May 1, International Workers’ Day, or May Day, as it’s also known, today I’d like to revisit the idea of protest art: what it is, who creates it and when, and also why. Nowadays, it seems that we’re in more and more need of protest art, of making protest art in response to our reality, a reality that keeps changing, and not necessarily in a good way. I believe that now more than ever we need activism and protest art.
Thank you for reading,
PS: Did you know that May 1 is National Photography Day, and that the month of May is National Photography Month here in the U.S.? Who knew? But it’s definitely something to keep in mind this month, during our image-making endeavors 🙂
Creative Work: Purpose, Protest, Passion
(and not necessarily in that particular order)
Recently, an ACT UP activist reminded me of the purpose of our creative work and our responsibility to create a certain kind of work. Speaking of the activist art made at the height of the AIDS pandemic, he noted, “We didn’t want to do work that’s in a museum; we wanted to do work that’s on the streets…guess where our work is now?”
That kind of artwork can undoubtedly be found in museums and streets. Just think of all the buttons and banners and t-shirts people wear nowadays when demonstrating (for their rights, for example) or only as a way to express themselves or their support for a specific cause (fight AIDS, equal rights, animal rights, women rights, the environment, etc.).
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