Christopher and I began this issue of
More Than Money,
we didn't relate much to its theme; we think of ourselves
as educators, organizers, and parents, not artists. But
the deeper we got into it, the more we related to the
questions presented, and the more our eyes opened to the
power and possibility of art in our lives.
have started to talk with our local arts center about
painting a mural on the rear wall of our garage that faces
a public area -- perhaps an image that celebrates the
town's beautiful pond and recent efforts to clean it up.
We are deliberating about how to invest more in beautifying
our home, while still conserving resources so we have
more to share with others. We joke that our flowering
rock garden, in its humble way, is public art that enriches
the dozens of people a day who stroll past it.
importantly, after enjoying a "comic cabaret"
by United for a Fair Economy about the growing disparity
of wealth in the United States, we committed ourselves
to find ways for the Impact Project (the nonprofit that
More Than Money)
to use creative arts
more to express its ideas.
hope that you, too, will take from this issue a renewed
appreciation for how art might enrich not only your life,
but the lives of all, and a greater commitment to make
that dream a reality. Our world now is far from this;
not only is a large portion of humanity struggling for
life's necesities, but even in the richest of countries
the arts are often viewed as inconsequential and are grievously
people with wealth (artists and non-artists), we can help
change this. We can advocate for public funding of art,
and support programs that nurture arts programs for those
who traditionally have less access to them (not only the
"fine arts" but all forms of cultural expression).
We can fund and participate in projects that use arts
to further positive social change. And, with ingenuity,
we can find innumerable ways to support the artists around
us, from buying their art to subsidizing their rent to
helping start local art centers and institutions.
can affirm the kind of world that many of us with wealth
seek to help build: a world where all people, not just
successful artists and the well-to-do, have abundant clean
water, food, shelter, and dignified work and
beauty, creativity, and artistic self-expression. We take
inspiration from the famous folk song inspired by a 1912
walkout of women textile workers in Lawrence, Massachusetts,
thirty miles from our home.
lives shall not be sweated,
from birth until life closes,
Hearts starve as well as bodies,
give us bread but give us roses.
more the drudge and idler,
ten who toil where one reposes,
But a sharing of life's glories
--bread and roses, bread and roses!
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