On September 21, CODEPINK displayed works of art that answered the prompt "What does peace mean to you? The collection highlights Palestinian liberation, imagines an end to borders, and uplifts community.
An illustration for an article on Palestinian solidarity organizing and the BDS movement published in Partisan Magazine.
Gerard Dalbon is a freelance illustrator and printmaker based in NYC and an organizer with DSA. Gerard grew up in Romania and immigrated to NY where he graduated with a BFA in Illustration from the School of Visual Arts. His work varies in theme and content and often explores topics of nature and identity, with most recent work focusing on socialist organizing and class struggle politics. His work can be found online at gerarddalbon.com and on socials @gerarddalbon
“NO COLD WAR”
An illustration for the DSA Democratic Left Winter 2021 Issue opposing the new US led Cold War against China and calling for global cooperation to fight climate change.
"SHIREEN ABU AKLEH"
This painting was created as a tribute to Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu-Akleh, who was assassinated by Israeli forces. Feda utilizes a mix of bold colors in order to depict a collage of powerful symbols, such as the Handala and our beloved Jerusalem. These drawings convey strength in parallel to Shireen’s voice, which threatened a cowardly colonial regime. The abstract expressionist piece displays Shireen Abu-Akleh, reflecting the bright-colored beauty that encompasses her. Several words in English and Arabic are scattered within the art, such as the names of Palestinian villages and revolutionary phrases.
Feda is a Chicago-based Palestinian artist. Abstract motifs, a bold color palette, and themes of resistance, nostalgia, and power characterize her art. She enjoys painting and drawing as an outlet to release the emotions we've been carrying for generations. She is currently pursuing her Master's degree in Public Health at Emory University in Atlanta, GA.
@fedaiyya, @fedaiyya_art) https://www.etsy.com/shop/fedaiyya
"MILK AND TOMATOES AND TOWERS AND FRIENDS"
Pen & Ink
In theory, peace is the simplest of concepts. Historically and presently it is the most difficult to grasp. In my work, the most cellular depictions of peace can be viewed in the subsection of my work, seen in the bottom right. My summer was filled with milk, tomatoes, and friends. I was granted the privilege to be a goofball all Summer, made possible by the bubble of privilege and opportunity I was born into and live peacefully within. There’s a gap between my privilege and the world at large. A void is seen surrounding my bubble. Failed concepts of peace surround me and hold that void in place. Will things change?
Tom is a Chicago based artist born in Omaha, NE. He received his BFA in Drawing with a Minor in Art History in 2020. Tom started an MFA program this Fall at SAIC with a concentration in Printmedia. His current creative practice is focused on pen and ink drawings, patterning, sculpture, and fiber arts. Tom is a substitute teacher for Chicago Public Schools and is a Teaching Artist with the Chicago Park District.
An older woman and her son were seen in different protests around this time in Bogota, Colombia. They were defending the front line of Bogotá (Several of the members of the front line were imprisoned, tortured, and persecuted by authorities).
Laura Moreno, a Colombian multidisciplinary artist known as Allpa, is a documentary and artistic nude photographer incited to make people feel uncomfortable and upset with the images so challenging and crude. Since she was little she liked to see life from a broad, real, and raw perspective. She was struck by the everyday life and the cold reality behind each person being attracted to the story that made them a unique individual. From the age of 19, she began to photograph people on the street in their daily activities seeing the misery that exists in Colombia, a country that was once called "The Happiest Country in The World", but many are hungry and scarcity abounds; this concern led her to explore photography in a social and political aspect wanting to show what the news didn't say and were hiding from the public.
During the social outbreak in Colombia, in 2020, youth, adults, and the elderly came out to protest the unpunished deaths and false positives that took place during the protest. This photo was taken representing all the women who were killed, sexually abused, and punished during this period.
"BOOKS NOT BOMBS"
Books Not Bombs is a digital piece that was inspired by Michelle’s 7-year-old daughter and that captures the essence of our times where books and education are being challenged while weapons and wars continue to take the forefront. The focus of the artwork is a girl with a CODEPINK sign that reads ‘Books not Bombs’. The girl is running towards a breathtaking view of Van Gogh’s Starry Night where stars have transformed into books. The colors of the painting are a mixture of bright and dark shades. The dark colors are a symbol of war and weapons, while the bright colors represent peace and hope.In the present day, politicians in the U.S. are busy debating and arguing about banning books at schools, questioning their content and effect on students. However, they unanimously agree to send more and more weapons to war zones, which kill innocent people. “Books Not Bombs” urges people to prioritize education over war. It highlights the need to nurture young minds with books and knowledge, instead of weapons of destruction. Michelle hopes that this artwork will inspire people to take action and fight for a better future.The use of the iconic Starry Night and a little girl’s call to action creates a perfect visual representation of what our future can be, a world that values art and education instead of war.
Michelle was born in Venezuela and holds a bachelor’s degree in languages and international affairs from the University La Sorbonne Paris IV, in Paris. Michelle is CODEPINK’s Latin America coordinator.
"NO BOMBS, NO BORDERS"
This piece is entitled "No Bombs, No Borders". It pays tribute to all the survivors of war and those affected by racist border policies, immigration, and deportation. I used a combination of linocut print and screenprint ink techniques to create this. The canvas is a piece of fabric that I had lying around, which just goes to show that you can do anything with what you have on hand to get your message across.
Nala (she/they) is a Hamilton-based artist and organizer. They are a Somali survivor of war and love making art that promotes peace and love.
"FROM PALESTINE TO MEXICO"
This political poster is a visual representation of a common protest chant, "From Palestine to Mexico border walls have got to go!" The chant signifies solidarity between Palestine and Mexico in their collective struggle to abolish the border/apartheid walls that prohibit its indigenous people to move freely in their lands. The artist depicts the Palestinian woman dancing dabke while holding the Mexican man's hand as he performs danza de los concheroes. Dabke is a Levantine Arab folk dance, meaning “stamping of the feet” or “to make a noise”. In the context of Palestine, dabke is used as a form of resistance against Israeli apartheid to display joy in the face of brutal occupation. Danza de los concheroes, translates as "dance of the Chichimecas, Aztecas and Mexicas" that predates colonization and is used in indigenous rituals deriving from Mexica culture symbolizing the unity of man with the universe and to maintain harmony. The two are performing their indigenous dances on top of the border wall to break the wall's structure down. This is done to show that their people were there and will remain once the walls are gone, and liberation is achieved.
Alexis Judeh was born and raised on the South and West side of Chicago, coming from a Mexican/Palestinian household. Her upbringing has been the primary reason for being an activist. Alexis organizes for all low-income people and racial justice within the Black and Brown community as a S.T.E.A.M educator. She uses poetry and visual arts to convey a message of resistance in the fight for the liberation of all stolen lands.