An Open Letter To Artists and Designers Everywhere…
As you may know, I have always been one of the loudest voices for artists rights and recognition of the arts as vital to a progressive society. If you know me, I have fought tooth and nail as a voice for arts students. I proudly wear the badge of “that annoying artsy guy”. It’s not the first time I’ve heard that, and it won’t be the last.
We are currently facing hard times, both economically and morally as artists and designers. We are fighting a battle to prove we have value, and we have worth. The NEA specifically and arts education in general are under attack. The new administration has set themselves up as judges of whats moral or comfortable. They’ve decided they are the ones to define ART. It’s an administration that puts profits before thinking, before people. In other words, the administration is engaging in CENSORSHIP. True art is not comfortable, it never should be. True art makes you think. It makes you feel something, whether it’s dance, film, music or a visual piece. Art is life. Art is power. Art is VITAL
We have always been in this fight, sometimes even within our own families or with our friends. We have always been strong in our convictions that creating art is what we were born to do. Making art is THE reason I exist. When the nuclear winter comes, and it will sooner than we think, if I must take up a stick and draw in the dust, I will. If I lose my hands and sight, I will make art in some way, some fashion. I was drawing before I could write my name, and meet the great beyond with a pencil or pen in my hand. I AM AN ARTIST and I always will be.
As we move into the coming storm, know that I passionately believe and stand behind two principles:
1. You can and should make money from art and design…that’s not a bad thing at all! It should be embraced not vilified.
2. The function of art and design is to challenge, to hold a mirror up to society. The function of the artist is to be unafraid of any challenge, my challenge is to be worthy….
I promise you I will:
• fight for artists rights everywhere.
• do whatever I have to ensure that artists (anyone) aren’t censored or silenced by narrow minded bigots afraid of the truth or reality.
• work to promote the image of the artists around the world
• work to provide the best arts education I can in a way that is best for the students.
• work for the betterment of all artists, everywhere.
We have a lot to fear as we look into the future. We always have. The difference this time being what we imagined is now real. We are legion. We are mass. We are artists and we will not be silenced, now or ever!