I started to understand the power of art for change through my relationship and conversations with an El Salvadorean artist named Elmer who lived in the slums of Costa Rica while I studied abroad last semester. He had so many dreams for how to change his neighborhood and so many dreams to use his art in the lives of other people, but because of his social status, everything was an incredibly slow process. He works as a security guard and sells paintings to tourists, but he never stops dreaming. He always made me realize how much privilege I have..not just monetarily but in accessibility. It made me realize the kind of responsibility I have to use art to create change and awareness.
After doing our show, “A Collaboration of Differences” last semester I started dreaming about the possibilities of joining the artists I know for a cause. The work of Charity: Water has always resonated with me. Water should never be a commodity…it should never be something the privileged have access to and the poor don’t. If I believe that people have a right to life, then I believe they have a right to clean water. I also love how Charity: Water shows the connections between water and other facets of life like health and education.
Something that just started out as a small idea exploded into this great event that raised about $1600 for Charity: Water. I feel like I was in shock the whole night. It all came together soo beautifully and there were waay more people who showed up than I could have ever imaged. Some people came and just donated money, and we left with just a few pieces left over. I am so inspired by the fire that I feel like I see in college students to be a part of change. I couldn’t believe how many people got on board with this program. We had like 25 people involved to pull it all together. That’s insane to me. Hopefully this is just the start of it.
A huge thanks to the following people for donating their art:
Danielle Wells, Ashley McLaughlin, Jamie Speegle, Kelsey Duvall, Josh Pickens, Amanda Jenkins, Caitlin Bergren, Amanda Burley, Karla Kalantar, Molly Gore, Emily Nutt, Emily Hutson, Mike Hatcher, Aubrey Carroll, and Heather Fisk.
PLUS thank you to Kait Kelm for the cupcakes, Sodexo for the punch, So Aware for the music, and Ann Smith for helping make it all happen!