These Are Not My Problems: Lacuna Artist Lofts Opening / by Julie Schumacher

One of the best parts of Forth is the chance to celebrate the endeavors of the community we're building. As Shannon Colón put it, "I adore the Forth community, and always leave feeling inspired and refreshed, so why wouldn't I go? I love meeting new Forth family and seeing how they're tearing it up." untitled-3

And so several alums gathered at the Lacuna Artist Lofts last Saturday for the opening of These Are Not My Problems, a show on systemic change work which attempted (and I'd say successfully!) "to marry creators, activists, policy makers, art admirers and anyone with a desire to reclaim humanity." Indeed!

With topics ranging from economic inequality to solitary confinement, rape advocacy to environmental degradation, the war on drugs to drone warfare, the show, presented by the 8th Day Center for Justice and curated by Jeremy Van Cleef, the show featured three Forth participants, all from our Spring '14 salon, among the civic minded artists.

Pitch Design Union principle Margot Harrington's The Certificate of Safe Space addressed her ongoing engagement with the creation of protected, empowering and productive spaces for all people. Inspired by her assigned topic of sexual harassment, she broadened the reach to embrace all individuals' rights to feel and be safe.

Activism is a way of life and work for Margot, who was recently summoned to the White House a for a Data Jam related to protecting students from sexual assault. What'a Data Jam? Read from Margot herself here.

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Crystal Hodges and Linsey Burritt of INDO had a taste of just what it means to go viral when their installation partnership with Honey Maid sent the interwebs on fire. They created an intentionally positive response to a (not all) negative response to a more inclusive take on the word "wholesome." The YouTube views alone are creeping towards 4 million.

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As part of the INDO installation, visitors are invited to sign a pledge dedicated to raising awareness to one of the 13 causes These Are Not My Problems addresses. Then, they were rolled up, glued and added to the pillars of positivity supporting the LOVE.

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The gals we've gotten to know through Forth produced two of the pieces showcased, and the rest were equally moving, thoughtful and though-provoking. Kelly Allison shared, "The show was an amazing collaboration of artists, uniting to stand against today's most pressing issues of social injustice. At once empowering, challenging, and eye opening, each piece was perfectly curated and executed to drive home the message that change is due, and it's up to us to start a revolution."

The Pilsen space itself is worth a visit. An old macaroni factory(!!), the large space is chock full of galleries, event spaces, local makers and businesses.

The show is up all month long. Go, add your voice, get inspired and act.