Dubai: As many as 30 artists of 10 nationalities have taken part in a virtual art campaign that originated in Dubai to salute the frontline warriors fighting coronavirus and to inspire the community to stay positive amidst the pandemic.
Titled “Inspire the World—Creative Art Campaign Against COVID-19,” the initiative was the brainchild of Thee Artist Network led by artists Sijin Gopinathan and Nisa Mubarak.
“It is a social initiative campaign and art challenge. The main aim of the art campaign is to spread positive vibes around the society during the time of the coronavirus pandemic,” said Indian art director Sijin Gopinathan.
As an artist, he said he felt it was his duty and responsibility to inspire the community and share the positivity through art during these tough times.
“Then I got the idea to create a social art campaign, because art is a powerful medium. So we decided to invite artists around the world to be a part of this creative campaign.”
When he came up with the concept, a lot of artists from various countries who call Dubai their home, and some former expats now living in other countries came to be part of the initiative.
“They made different theme-based artworks. Some of them created artworks in tribute to the front liners, some others illustrated awareness and social distancing messages. The collective effort from the creative fraternity made the campaign unique,” he said.
One of the participants Sugat Priyadarshi, an art teacher in Dubai, produced a series of artworks on COVID-19 superheroes such as healthcare professionals, police personnel, sanitisation workers, delivery boys etc.
Italian artist Clizia Zepparelli said the campaign during the lockdown in her country gave her “a further push to react and not give up.”
“Through the art of talented artists, we can heal the soul and at least defeat our fears by inspiring others.”
Tutorials for kids staying home
The artists associated with the project are also planning to support the children in Dubai who are now confined to their homes for safety.
“We are planning to help and support them and other art lovers by making free tutorial videos which we will share through various online platforms,” said Gopinath.
Staying at home with limited human contact can have a significant impact on mental well-being - and in particular, feelings of loneliness, pointed out Russian artist Margarita Kunizheva.
“That’s why I was so happy to be a part of this great campaign and it really helped me to cope with my loneliness during the lockdown.”
Echoing the same opinion, Jordanian artist-cum-guitarist Ahmad Abu Tarboush said the project not just unified the artists.
“It allowed me to relieve stress, strengthen critical thinking, and improve and sustain my memory. This campaign has relieved my mental exhaustion in the same way the outdoors does — walking in nature, losing oneself in art,” said Tarboush, who combined his artwork saluting the front-liners with an original score he composed in guitar.
Another participant in the campaign, Filipina artist Anz Sosa said: “Amidst all this turmoil, you need to spend time with your family. Engage in art and crafts that develop imagination and creativity, express emotions and promote curiosity. This will strengthen family relationships. Let’s save lives. Stay in your nest. This is the world’s request and ours too.”