A few months ago, I was lurking on Matthew Vasquez’s Facebook page (for those who don’t know, Matthew is the lead singer of Delta Spirit—a band that I am highly fond of), and I came across a Facebook event called “World Community Arts Day 2010” for which he had RSVPed. The title of the event immediately caught my attention, so I clicked on it, and behold! I discovered a fascinating phenomenon that apparently began a few years ago and is slowly becoming a global interest.
World Community Arts Day began in 2007 by a group of people who had a dream to use art on a global scale as a catalyst to raise social awareness in all sorts of contexts. We all have “global issues” that concern us: world peace, environment conservation, poverty, modern-day slavery, racial prejudice…the list goes on. So the idea was for people everywhere to consider a social issue that was important to them and to create an art project that related to said issue (in whatever medium one preferred). Fast-forward a few years…it’s now 2010, and people in various countries are making it their annual tradition to participate in World Community Arts Day.
Being an artist myself, this clearly struck a loud chord in my own heart. So I decided to participate this year. Well, today is World Community Arts Day, and this afternoon, I spent some time doing one of my favorite activities in the world: art (my chosen medium was charcoal + pencil sketching).
My afternoon began at the Laughing Ladies Café in Shoreline. With a 12 oz. hazelnut latte and my iTunes by my side, I sat down and began sketching, not entirely knowing what the result would be (that’s usually how it goes when I pursue any sort of art project). But you know what? I’m rather happy with the way my piece turned out:
I titled this one “Peace for the Nations.” (The Hindi inscription spells out the word “peace.”) And no, it’s not designed to raise awareness about world peace. Personally, I’m not sure that world peace will ever be obtained. But that’s another discussion for another time. So what is the drawing about, you ask? Well, it mainly represents a personal issue that, lately, has persistently been on my heart. It seems that everywhere I look, bad things keep happening, and as of late, the “bad” keeps moving closer to my own borders. And I’ve realized that the only “solution” to any of these issues is God’s gift of peace. And it’s just that: a gift. Not something I can obtain on my own. But here’s to hoping that I do obtain it at some point, and also, that I may serve as a sliver of peace to those around me. Perhaps this is a stepping stone. I can only hope that my art, as imperfect and insignificant as it is (like me), somehow serves as a catalyst for peace.