Isolation Activism Art Showcase

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Isolation Activism Art Showcase

Several weeks ago, #PassTheMicYouth challenged young activists to create art during this time of isolation. The theme of the challenge was hope. Activists all over the world used the power of hope in spreading their message and working to create change. Hope creates the idea that things don’t have to stay as they are, that tomorrow will look different, and that there are better days ahead. It’s a message that is particularly needed now. This post highlights some of our favorite submissions from the challenge along with each author’s explanation. Thank you so much to everyone who submitted and shared their creativity! 

What’s At Stake

By Bhavana Veeravalli

A girl is standing by a window. Outside the window is the Coronavirus and rib cage skeletons.This piece is a reminder as to the reason why we are enduring what we are right now. It feels alone, like we are aimless and this whole quarantine is a punishment for personal or environmental reasons. But for me, I thought about how this experience, this pandemic, this fear—is something that we are all experiencing as humans together. We may be apart and singular in this fight, but its necessary to understand that sacrifice is necessary for the collective good right now. This virus is indiscriminant, and that is a frightening thing. But I also know that this frightening time, like all painful things, will pass. It is difficult, but our personal motivations must be put on pause for a minute, and we must count all the people we love that we want to protect. We must use our eclectic mixture of fear, anxiety, hope, and love to remember that this fight is for not only those we love in our lives, but for the lives of every single person that is loved by someone.


In the Hands of Hope

By Charlotte Basile

Hands are holding the globe. Instead of land, there is a large question mark. The backgroun is many colors.My submission represents a feeling of uncertainty for the future, but the hope that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Although many of us may share some uneasiness during these times when it’s hard to still see the good in the world, the only way to rise above is to count our blessings, even when they seem scarce, and know that it will get better; it always does. The collage of bright colors with little streaks of darkness in the background of my painting symbolizes the potential for great things, even though we may encounter some difficulty, adversity, and trying times on our way to a better tomorrow. What’s important to remember is that the journey is not always easy, and it might be a little rocky, but the destination is invariably worth it.


Reaching for the Light

By Ren Price

White hands in pencil reaching towards a yellow backgroundMy piece is a symbolic drawing/painting that I drew at a time when my depression was particularly bad, it is the only positive piece I drew that year and it gave me hope that I could reach my goals and could have a happy life. I want young people to know they aren’t alone and have a chance at a better life and if you reach hard enough you can have what you deserve. Mental health has always been something I have been passionate about because I don’t want anyone to feel as alone as I sometimes do and especially young people should know they aren’t alone! Which is why there is more than one hand reaching, because so many people struggle with mental health and I think we should really strive to help and make sure people are aware and educated.


Counting

By Alessia Bianco

What did you do when you

Woke up this morning?

Between yawning and coffee,

Brushing your teeth or reading the news,

What did you do?

Maybe you did a big stretch, tried your

Best to keep both feet on the ground

As you wandered about, starting

Your morning like any other day.

What did you do when you

Went to sleep? Maybe there’s

A routine; a step by step guide

That you abide by without

Really thinking. Maybe

That’s reading a book, showering,

Any combination of things to

Finish the day.

It may be strange

For me to ask for you to look past

When we are all used to

Looking forward.

But in your head I want you to

Really think about these moments,

Count them.

1, 2, 3 things to do before bed.

Alice said she believed in

Six impossible things before breakfast.

How about you?

In your head, you’re

Probably thinking

“I don’t have time to think six things,

I have five minutes before I am free

To take one road going

Where-ever it is I told myself

I had to get to today.”

Why is it that in this country we

Choose to capitalize everything

But time?

You can’t change the world

Without changing your mind,

The kind of thoughtfulness

We need to survive

Is the kind you sacrifice

When you waste these moments.

I don’t have time

To think of six impossible things.

I don’t have time to go online

And learn something about

The world.

I don’t have time to make a

Difference.

But count the moments.

If showering and brushing your teeth

Is 15, if there’s 20 for breakfast or

10 for coffee, can you spare five minutes

Or less to do something for someone else?

That’s all it takes.

You can fight for six impossible things

In five minutes before breakfast.

You can go online, go on

Social media, retweet, like, share

Anything to show you care.

Because thoughts can become actions

If we take the time to believe in them.

I believe in six impossible things

Before breakfast.

Count them.

I believe that 1, we can find a world

With people that do things for

Someone in need.

I believe that 2, each of us

Deserves the opportunity to wake

Up each morning with water to shower

And food to eat.

I believe 3, that reading the news should

Be something you choose, not something

Forced or fake that you can’t escape.

I believe 4, that reading books shouldn’t

Be a crime, that education is a right.

I believe 5, that every person should

Be able to say “good night” without

Wondering if it will be their last.

And 6. I believe it took you five minutes,

To listen,

To hear me,

I believe when you move forward today,

Whoever you may be,

You’ll do something for someone else

For five minutes.

So, go on,

I’m counting on you.


Take Some Time to Unwind

By Trisha Beher

A woman is sitteing on her bed reading. She is holding a warm beverage. On here wall are phrases like 'Rise and Slay'Our current situation has taken a toll on all of us. Many of us have succumbed to anxiety attacks or existential crises. For most of us, it has been tough to keep our mental health intact. The news is constantly covering the death toll, and a lot of people are dealing with very difficult family situations. In the midst of this, it may be difficult to latch onto any sense of hope. However, I think that positivity can be found regardless of the circumstances, and there is always light even in the darkness. This is why I created the piece, Take Some Time to Unwind. This piece depicts the value of what we are living through. Even though everything happening is quite devastating, being at home has actually given many people the chance to rest. We’re always rushing in our lives. Rushing to a job, to school, rushing through eating breakfast, rushing through all the precious moments that we are so privileged to have. Now, many of us have the time to take a quiet moment to ourselves. Maybe our situation will give us a chance to finally slow things down a bit, relax, and enjoy the present. This piece depicts those moments of quiet introspection and self-love that we might get the opportunity to have right now. I am an avid mental health advocate and I want to continue creating pieces to help teens in my community cope with this extremely daunting situation. Artwork has a beautiful and powerful effect on people, and through my pieces, I am hoping to inspire people to maintain their mental health and prioritize self-love during this pandemic.


Silent Memories

By Katie Cothren

A pencil drawing of a fish. Its tail is flowingDuring the quarantine of the Covid 19 virus I have recently began to reflect in my solidarity on my past memories. This fish drawing is one of many that I have done through the years. I haven’t drawn as much in the last couple of years. Since the quarantine I have been exploring it again.



for Today

By Talia Dalton

I wrote this song, to remind the listener that even though we are living in this crazy time where your worries may overwhelm and take over every thought, we still have this moment. We still have each other, and the blue sky, the changing clouds, a bird’s song, and the sunrise. So let your worries fade into the beauty of today.


We want to think everyone who participated in this art challenge! We’ve loved checking out everyone’s creative submissions that reflect many of the realities we are all experiencing right now. If you are interested in submitting a piece of your art to #PassTheMicYouth whether it’s visual, musical, or written, use these guidelines. We will continue to highlight the voices of young activists!


Questions for Extended Dialogue

  • Which piece of art was your favorite? Why?
  • Which piece of art best captures the theme of hope? Why?
  • Have you ever created art with the intention of raising awareness about an issue and/or motivating social change? If so, can you describe the piece?