ART bridges

Greetings from Boston, MA, USA.

Those of you who follow my work, and sometimes roam my website, know that I have a tab dedicated to my Artivism (Projects where I use my art and my public visibility to help promote a cause I believe in.)

Naturally, first, I am an artist. My passion is to create. Whether with music, acting, design, writing, painting, you name it. But along the years, activism gradually started taking a bigger part of my life and career. I am not a politician, I cannot decide on policies and steer governments, but I do believe in grass root change, where people connect with people, on an individual level. People are afraid of what they don't know, but when they meet, they see the human being, not "the enemy". That's what I try to do with my music, open a little window, through which people can peek into the other side, and maybe learn something about the other.

I believe that art can bypass the brain, where stereotypes and preconceptions are formed, and shoot straight to the heart, where compassion lies.

This happens to be the reason why I am here in the US right now.

I am participating in two big benefit concerts for two organisations that are working to build bridges through the arts.

1. Artsbridge, brings together youth from communities in conflict for an art summer camp where they also learn dialogue and conflict resolution skills.

1. Seeds of Peace, originally working with youth from conflict areas, but now started initiating artist gatherings as well.

The realisation that artists can give a counter argument, that they can challenge the status quo, is important. We need to empower artists, so that they speak up without fear. Art is the best vessel to show how diversity can co-exist, and how different (often contradicting) narratives can be weaved into the "story of us", as opposed to a selfish and lonely "story of me".

Mira Awad

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