By Cristina Orsini | 9-03-2018
As a child, I always had a clear answer to the “what do you want to do when you grow up” question: I will become an artist! When the time came to choose my high school specialisation, I swent for a school focused on art education. After one year, I quit. The level of education was so poor that I realised I could never dream of university had I continued there.
Once at university, I wanted to study something in the humanities: I won’t be an artist but I can study what artists do. After a year, I changed my major. I felt that I wanted my studies to be as societally relevant as possible, I wanted to spend my time on something that would allow me to contribute to the social change I wanted to see: social sciences were my vocation.
For six years I buried my passion for art and creativity, focusing on conflict studies and human rights – which I loved. But Thraedable allowed me to get in touch with that creativity again, in a very different way that my young self could ever have imagined. It allowed me to see that there is no clear cut dichotomy between art and society, humanities and social sciences – the dichotomy is rather between people who are socially engaged and those who are not. In the words of a woman who intervened during a Thraedable documentary screening talking about activism, “in life you have a simple choice: either you do something or you do fuck all”.
Thraedable’s upcoming interview series Art – Socially! tells the stories of those who decided to “do something” through art, be it by drawing, singing, writing, or dancing. Not all of our interviewees will see themselves as activists, but what they all have in common is that they use art as a vehicle for a message, to fight for social justice, and to make us think – just like what we do at Thraedable with our designs. Indeed, art has enormous potential to shed light on difficult social issues, to puzzle us and force us to challenge our views, to make us laugh and cry, and to bring us closer to the humanity within ourselves. To me, art’s biggest power is not to make this world pretty, but to make it a little better.
So stay tuned for the stories of artists who contribute to this world, and show us how they make Art – Socially!
*Cover image: “Cut all skyscrapers if they are taller than palm trees”- Djerbahood, Djerba, Tunisia.