Creativity in the Time of COVID-19: Art as a Tool for Combating Inequity and Injustice is a project that explores how everyday people are using creativity to cope with the pandemic. Crowdsourcing examples of creativity during COVID-19, our public humanities collaboration is focused on highlighting art as a tool for combating inequity and injustice. 

Those who contribute will:

  • Have their creative work and connected stories documented and included in a major online collection sponsored by the Mellon foundation. All will have their creative work considered for a series of in-person physical exhibits that will showcase diverse examples from our archive.

  • Contribute to history by preserving crucial moments and memories from COVID-19 for themselves and future generations through the online collection;

  • Assure that diverse experiences and creative acts in the time of COVID-19 are represented in our cultural narratives, stretching across communities to capture in inclusive ways the full breadth and depth of our pandemic experiences.

 

During the pandemic, people everywhere are encountering individual and collective losses, disappointments, and hardships while sheltering in place. COVID-19 continues to reveal profound structural disadvantages and inequities, causing minority communities to be disproportionately affected by the pandemic. In this spirit, our final exhibitions—both physical and digital—will represent diverse acts of creativity, which speak to the myriad ways the pandemic is being experienced within and across multiple communities. 

Access and accessibility lie at the heart of this project. We see accessibility as a creative process not just a product created to reach standards outlined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Our exhibitions work to set a new standard for accessible experiences in museums, universities, and online by including everything from braille, audio descriptions, and tactile art to respite spaces for grieving and times for adjusted sensory environments. These accessible, in-person exhibits will take place across the U.S. in 2023, including Michigan, New York, Missouri, and Colorado.

Our collaborations with University and community partners expand the project’s reach to multiple communities. Thanks to the following partners for their support: