Unwavering Friendship in the Face of Art

Creative Growth Art Center is a studio for artists with disabilities, supporting a multitude of world-renowned artists and bolstering burgeoning talents. The common ground for most artists here is a shared experience of an inequitable amount of hardship and tragedy during some point in their lives. When joined together in shared space and by a mutually fundamental desire to create artwork, it almost invariably fosters a heightened social awareness and sense of empathy. Having the freedom to discuss these issues openly with peers while simultaneously engaging creatively can result in both emotional and artistic catharsis.

Read More

Queer in West Virginia

In high school, I never imagined finding online spaces boldly embracing the terms “Queer” and “West Virginia”. Despite growing up with two gay aunts and other close queer influences, the things I was told and the things I told myself about who I was and where I came from wrongly left me believing there weren’t any people like me in West Virginia. I believed this until I began discovering the digital queer community.

Read More

The Undiscovered Place in Portugal Where Music Happens

Trás-Os-Montes is a place with infinite beauty, ancient culture and a lot of character. Known for their generosity and good food, Transmontanos have been forgotten for too long. That was the starting point for us at INDIEROR, a non-profit organization from Chaves, Portugal. We work with the community to develop cultural alternatives in a very isolated and deserted region of the country, in order to give visibility to our town and region.

Read More

Balkanized!

Meaning: to divide a region into smaller, mutually antagonistic states. That wasn’t the case at the Zlatne Uste Golden Festival, held at Grand Prospect Hall in Brooklyn. It’s a two day festival of music and more from the Balkan countries, and it is generously inclusive. Hungary (technically not quite Balkan), Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Albania and Montenegro.

Read More

America is Here

Through a friend who works there, I was introduced to the Bellevue/NYU Program for torture (PSOT), which is based out of Bellevue hospital here in Manhattan. Besides the obvious medical issues, the organization deals with a host of other needs from their clients—immigration, legal and human rights issues, psychological trauma, employment, housing—all of which are interconnected.

Read More