Some of my favorite pieces of art were the product of grim times. Die Brucke and German Expressionists made social commentary their art’s only purpose, Picasso’s “Guernica” displays the horror of a bombing, Basquiat’s electrifying entire career etc. One thing that has kept my head up during this bleak time is knowing that Art Saves. I may not be able to be at every protest, or contribute to every cause financially, but I can work every day to create strange beauty in a world so determined to crush the abnormal.
Art has long been part of political resistance, but it doesn’t have to be overtly political to be effective, to be a part of challenging the status quo. Creating things to connect with the other outcasts is a resistance. Exuberantly dressing an “othered” body or being creative in your presentation is a resistance against cultural norms, the expectations placed upon women and bodies, and the ugliness surrounding us. Making beautiful or strange things even if they serve no purpose beyond ornamentation is a resistance. For some of us even existing as we are born and daring to be visible is a resistance. There is value in all of these. There is value in your efforts even if they seem “small” or frivolous.
Some will say fashion is frivolous and ephemeral, and I will say that fashion and art have saved my life over and over. Take care of yourselves, celebrate your culture and style and creativity every day if you can. Take care of vulnerable people in your community, despite what capitalism would have us believe we *are* all connected on this planet. And wear weird clothes. 😉