Learning How To Deal With Change...
I have taken a step back over the last two and a half months to reassess my project and its goals. As much as I wanted to continue with the path of displaying artwork in mental health facilities/hospitals, with the global pandemic now is just not the right time. America is not only dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, we are also fighting against racial injustice and inequality which could also be classified as a national pandemic. With these two major events in the nation anxiety, depression, and suicide rates throughout the United States has skyrocketed, putting us on the verge of a national mental health crisis.
I have decided to re-frame this project to be more focused on local businesses instead of facilities right now. Hopefully in the future I will be able to come back to displaying art in mental health facilities/ hospitals, just not at this moment in time. This re-framed project involves a collection of murals that inspires change in the way society thinks about mental illness and re-wiring our brains to cope with a global pandemic. I call my paintings Sacred Spaces because they are imagined environments that I initially created for myself to have a place of escape. These Spaces became sacred to me because painting them and reflecting in them acted as therapy for my own struggles with anxiety and depression. These Spaces saved my life and the goal of this project is to provide the same sense of hope to others. As the Pandemic continues, the anxiety and depression rates in the American population are rising. Because of COVID-19 many businesses were forced to close their doors and are now struggling to bring customers back as they begin to reopen.
For this project I will need to secure funding for painting supplies (which includes paint, drop cloths, brushes, etc.), transportation of materials, and actual installation time which will hopefully come in the form of an art grant. My hope is that the murals will generate positive publicity for the businesses that I paint them in. Not only do I want my work to speak to mental health but I want to use my work as a tool to promote community wellness. We simply cannot get through this Pandemic or a national mental health crisis individually so we all need to work together to support each other. That support starts in each community and then branches outward from there. The businesses that will house the murals will not have to contribute financially to my murals or my time. By the end of this year I should be ready to start painting on walls!