…and a black woman (trigger warning)

Three Young White Men and a Black Woman / Christiaen van Couwenbergh, 1632 / Musée des Beaux-Arts, Strasbourg The Bath / Jean-Léon Gérome, ca. 1880–1885 / Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Mildred Anna Williams Collection Advertisements

The Wounded Warrior

Sculpture of the Dying Gaul at the Capitoline Museum in Rome. A Gallic warrior collapses from the mortal wound to his chest. On display through March 16, 2014, at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. (Photo credit) A mask, painted by a Marine who attends art therapy to relieve post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, is … Continue reading

Children Become Artists Become Journalists Become Darfur.

You’re fluent in international development, human rights law, medicine, or the arts? That’s amazing! But when it comes to rallying the rest of us, sometimes we need to be sold on the idea in our own native tongue, with strong communication. I was just talking with a co-worker about the need for non-profits to translate … Continue reading

One Million Bones

This past weekend thousands of volunteers, dressed in white, laid out one million bones on the National Mall as part of the One Million Bones project. Students, artists, activist groups, and other organizations from around the world crafted the bones. Each bone represented victims of genocide and mass violence. The event was solemn… But also … Continue reading

Terra Spiritus…with a darker shade of pale

Bea Maddock is one of Australia’s most influential contemporary artists. Her most recent works often consider place and memory, importance of the land, and the way Australia remembers and preserves multiple views of history. Nowhere are these themes more evident than in her piece “Terra Spiritus…with a darker shade of pale” at the National Gallery of … Continue reading

Mamalu (When I look at the world)

John Pule’s Mamalu (When I look at the world) is one of a few contemporary pieces at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne that made me stop, look closer, and then think, “I have to blog this one.” Pule (born 1962) is from Niue, a South Pacific island country to the northeast of New … Continue reading

Alcaston Gallery – Contemporary Art and Indigenous Perpectives

While walking the Fitzroy Aboriginal Heritage Trail I found Alcaston Gallery located at one of the heritage sites. A contemporary art gallery, Alcaston specializes in indigenous art and supports over 200 artists in total. The gallery places Aboriginal art within a wider Australian context, avoiding the common error of ghettoizing indigenous paintings to a special … Continue reading

Talking Satire with Song Byeok

I was thrilled this week to get a chance to interview Song Byeok, former State Propaganda Artist for North Korea. Song lost both parents and a sister to the famine of the 1990s that ravaged his homeland. After trying to escape into China to find food, he was tortured by the same government he used … Continue reading

A Brief for the Defense

I’m feeling melancholy today. I found out my childhood music teacher passed away this weekend, and even though I’d been preparing for it since her diagnosis of Alzheimer’s a few years ago, it still hit me hard. She encouraged me to make music, and through that she helped ease the pain of some difficult school … Continue reading

The Global Impact of Debt and the Arts

After Chen Guangcheng’s epic escape from house arrest in China, I wrote about how debt can keep us from doing good in the world. At the same time, I’m often writing about how important the arts are for human rights, and vice versa. So it should come as no surprise that all three are connected: … Continue reading

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