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What is Political ARt Month?

Like everyone else, I always enjoy seeing the new talented MFA artists showing off at the galleries every year. All of this is great fun, until the Titanic hits the iceberg; then all this creativity seems very frivolous and silly. And the artists that keep doing the same old stuff and only read Art in America for their information are not going to be the artists that the world needs. I want San Antonio artists and the artists from all 50 states to be the artists that the world needs.
Gene Elder
Archives Director
HAPPY Foundation
"I may not know politics but I know what I like! And anything that expresses political views through art, or any other thoughtfully and intelligently executed creative process, gets my juices going! Bring on the PoliArt!!!"
                                --Jack Hyman, actor,writer, New York 
"A few centuries ago, the Catholic Church declared comedy a sin in order to get female mimes off the streets. Obviously, the Catholic Church recognized that all art is political, as it can question, influence and change minds."
                  --Robin Tyler, Comic/activist
"All art is inevitably political because it influences how we see our worlds. But this connection often goes unrecognized. Good art is about changing the status quo--'cause, God knows, the world needs improvement. Good art seems to arise from a collective, unconscious mind that sensitive artists are able to tap into. Political Art Month makes the connection clear and reveals the kind of change that is bubbling up from the Earth's unconscious mind."
--Toby Johnson
Author, Gay Perspective, Two Spirits, Secret Matter, and more...

"Although I must disagree with your statement "Art is political for starters. Your art is your politics." if I follow it to its logical conclusion, then all art is political. Any celebration of art is a celebration of political art. Seems a bit wishy washy to me. At first, I thought your idea of a political art month was interesting but the more I thought about it, the more I was afraid it was just a way of highlighting propaganda or extreme didacticism and, if you know my work at all, that is something I am trying to break apart. Virtually nothing is black or white. And art that takes these positions is uninteresting and often preaching to the converted. If, however, Political Art Month is about highlighting art with a complex and nuanced political focus, then I am all for that. Although I wonder if relegating political art to a particular month only helps to marginalize it and castrates it of some of its power...just a thought."-                     --Chris Sauter San Antonio
"I have met Art and he is humbled that there will be a month honoring his political work. He gets no respect from people who are where they are because of him, so this is a long overdue and richly deserved retrospective. I hope he can make it, but he was recently seen in Iran doing chalk drawings in front of Ahmadinejad's house, then nothing."
                              --Kate Clinton, Comedian/activist
"I was just sitting here at my desk gazing at a wonderful Daumier lithograph (it never loses its fascination for me) and thinking that Daumier couldn't have wished for a more colorful landscape from which to draw his satire than the readily available fodder we in our generation have to choose from; then again, perhaps he wouldn't want to be here witnessing the demise of newspapers as we know them, and most likely joining the hordes of the unemployed in the bargain."
                                     --Princess Cook, San Antonio
"Political Art Month, like Contemporary Art Month, is an oxymoron; or, everyday is Guernica somewhere."    --Penny Boyer, San Antonio arts activist
"As long as I am in San Antonio, July has been reserved to being the month for culture. Now we are moving to the culture of politics. It will be great to have an entire month devoted to politics - and also bring some "culture" to it. It can be done and we would be - again - paving the way. My vote is for bringing culture into politics and everybody will win."
                       --Dr. Angelika Jansen
                               Representative San Antonio-Dresden Alliance
"I once asked the inimitable New York writer Grace Paley what makes a writer 'political' and she answered without hesitation, 'Tell the truth!' Words to live by."
                          --William Jack Sibley
                                  Novelist, playwright, screenwriter, journalist
"Everything (including art) is political, directly or indirectly, intentionally or accidentally. There's no greater art project than trying to shape the world. I believe we can make the world better, and I'm pretty sure we've got nothing better to do."
                    --Carolyn Sortor
"An artist sees with an immigrant's eyes, and makes novelty of the autochthonous. Like the immigrant, the artist reliably infuses society with cultural dynamism, and as reliably receives a measure of  society's mistrust."
                                         --Chuck Barnes, Portland, Oregon
"Political Art reaches into the soul and spirit of every human being and gives emotion to otherwise intellectual issues."
David Mixner
                              -- V
ictoria Shackelford LPC
"I think that when art is not about politics, it is often the politics of indifference."
Glenna Park, artist, Washington, D.C.
"Art ultimately renders a portrait of civilization, how can that not be political?"
                           -- Ron Feldman
                                     Feldman Gallery
"I love doing art projects that have a political motivation. Its really a huge part of the fun. The bigger the issue, the bigger the satisfaction. I simply like trying to make the world a little more how I like it to be. I highly recommend the experience to everyone."
                               Good luck!

                                  -- Annie Sprinkle, Ph.D. Feminist, Sexecologist, Ecosexual
"Democracy depends on, even demands, its artists. It is the role of art to provoke, as much as to entertain or edify."
                              -- Dr. Lois Leveen, writer and performer, Portland,Oregon
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For more information about Political Art Month, contact Gene Elder at: elder4tomato@yahoo.com