WE STAND WITH YOU, #ARTISTSFORLOVE

jessicaswift-artistsforlove_lowres

My artist pal Kelly Rae Roberts wrote a really lovely blog post recently. There is a lot going on in our world, in my home country –the USA – right now. The recent Presidential election  has left some deeply upset. Some are celebrating. Some are afraid. Some are expressing a lot of hate.

Kelly Rae shared this quote by Toni Morrison, which I feel compelled to share here, too, because it led me to say yes to her invitation to create a piece of art as part of this movement she started called #artistsforlove.

“This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no place for despair, no time for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. This is how civilizations heal.”

YES.

My view is that no matter how you’re feeling about what’s happening in the USA and our world currently, wherever you fall on the political spectrum, I think we can all agree that more love and treating one another with kindness, compassion, and respect is always a great idea. I’m not talking about conditional love here – “you’re a Democrat, so you’re worthy of my love” or “you’re a Republican, so you’re worthy of my love” or “you’re a woman, so you’re worthy of my love”… no, I’m talking about unconditional love here. Love that might make you a little uncomfortable. Love that reaches across boundaries even when it might feel scary and says “Hi, how are you, fellow human? Let’s talk, because I want to fall in love with you, and the only way to do that is to connect with you.” Love in action that matches the kind of people that we want to be within ourselves. Love that knows we are all people, made of exactly the same stuff, just trying to be happy in this world. We are all people just trying to be happy.

We may hold beliefs that differ from one another or opposite viewpoints, but I truly believe there is common ground to be found between everyone, everywhere, because when it comes down to our essences, we are all exactly the same.

////////

I don’t believe these times call for violent protest. Or more fighting. Or hate. Lord no, that is the exact opposite of what we need more of. We need LOVE. Person-to-person, stranger-to-stranger, reaching across boundaries expressions of love. I’m trying to discern what that means for me, as a mostly home-bound working artist and mama to a one-year-old; as someone who isn’t routinely in contact with people other than, say, the Trader Joe’s checkout people and Baby C’s music teacher! Haha. If you have any ideas for me, I’m all ears. I want to help people feel safe. Seen. Loved. Cared for. Important. Welcome. Not alone. Where can one do that in her community?

So. As part of this #artistsforlove movement, I give you this image. You are free to download it, print it out, share it on your social media sites, whatever you like! For a high-res printable version, just click the image above.

////////

May you find yourself loved today. By yourself, by your people, by your community, by your planet. You deserve it. We all do.

xo
jess