Art Watch is a group of local artists, cofounded by Jackie Hoysted and Ellyn Weiss, who have gathered together to develop ways to use the power of visual communication to express their support for true democratic values, such as inclusion, tolerance, equality under the law, and stewardship of the environment. (ArtWatchDC.com is under construction)
Projects initiated by Art Watch (and its subsidiary GuerillArt) include:
One House Project: initial exhibition Touchstone Gallery, Washington DC November 2017
The One House project will embody both resistance to the subversion of values such as inclusion, tolerance, equality and stewardship of the environment and assertion of their importance and our adherence to them. The overriding principle is our vision for a country where we are united as one people rather than divided against each other by race, gender, class, region, etc. Inspired by such models as the AIDS quilt and Faces of the Fallen, we will aim to universalize our message by bringing it to a very personal level.
Each participant begins with a 12″ square piece of plywood. The artist will dedicate that square to one of her/his ancestors, who came to this country from elsewhere – whether in 1620 or last year, whether voluntarily or involuntarily. Participants who are themselves immigrants will use the square for their own story. Since Native Americans were the first inhabitants of this land, they should honor any ancestor whose life story is important to them. To the extent information is available, the ancestor’s name, date, and country or region of origin, will be put on the square; we recognize that it may not always be. Then the square will be used to commemorate the ancestor with text, imagery or any combination. What do we know or imagine about them and what do we want other people to know about them? How are they important to us?
An underlying structure – a house – will be constructed and the completed squares will be attached to the outside of the structure, covering it completely.
It is intended that the project be interactive; for example, that during the run of the exhibition, workshops would be held where the concepts behind the project would be discussed and participants would make their own ancestor panels. Or, a supply of squares could be available at the hosting gallery so that anyone visiting could make a square and add it to a “house” – either wall-hung or three dimensional. An instruction manual will be developed that would describe how to replicate the project anywhere.
Nasty Woman Exhibition (forthcoming)
What feminism looks like, A Nasty Women Exhibition and Auction to benefit Planned Parenthood
Curated by Erin Devine and Shante Bullock
Interstitial feminism is the current terminology that expresses the empowerment of women to effect change across a diverse range of issues: women’s health, gendered violence, racism and police brutality, equality under the law, poverty, immigration and refugee rights, environmental protections, rights of indigenous communities, to highlight a few.. It recognizes that true and effective change in the global sphere results from women’s organizing, joining all minority groups and inclusive of men in these efforts. An all woman exhibition, the artists included in What feminism looks like will be asked to contribute works that address the range of these issues in various media.
GuerillArts distributed n(ICE) flyers to areas of DC that received fake ICE flyers the previous week For the backstory read http://dcist.com/…/…/fake_ice_posters_appear_in_sw_neigh.php
Local artists protested the President’s withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement (Accord de Paris), while thanking those countries that continue to uphold it. GuerillArt implemented ArtWatchAccord on Sunday night, 18 June 2017, in which they delivered small bundles of bamboo with an explanatory note to the embassies of 173 countries that continue to uphold the accord.
The note states:
On behalf of the concerned citizens of the United States, who are distressed about the condition of climate change and its danger to the planet, we thank your country for remaining a member of the Paris Climate Agreement.
Please remember that many American cities, states, businesses, and universities have joined in solidarity to continue with the Agreement’s tenets despite the misguided choices of our current president.
With all respect, appreciation, and support, we honor your commitment.