Renowned photographer and artist Carrie Mae Weems has partnered with a group of cultural institutions in North Texas, led by the Dallas Contemporary, to bring her “Resist COVID/Take 6!” campaign to Dallas-Fort Worth.
Weems launched the campaign in April in cities across the United States to raise awareness about high COVID-19 infection rates among Black, Latino, Asian/Pacific Islander and Native American communities. The “Take 6” in the campaign’s title refers to the recommended six feet of separation in social distancing guidelines.
“We’ve all been impacted by COVID-19. It’s an ecological health crisis of epic proportions — an international disaster,” Weems said in a statement. “And yet we have indisputable evidence that people of color have been disproportionately impacted. The death toll in these communities is staggering. This fact affords the nation an unprecedented opportunity to address the impact of social and economic inequality in real time. Denial does not solve a problem. And I thought, ‘How can I use my art and my voice as a way of underscoring what’s possible and bring the general public into a conversation, into heightened awareness of this problem to better the community in which I live?’”
Eight billboards featuring images from Weems’ archive with messages in English and Spanish were unveiled this week as part of the first phase of the DFW campaign.
The second phase will include the distribution of reusable cloth face masks to neighborhoods in the DFW metroplex with high COVID-19 infection rates. Promotional items, such as reusable bags, buttons and posters, will also be given away at community centers, testing sites, food banks, and churches.
Some 50 nonprofit groups, including North Texas Food Bank and Fort Worth Arts Council, will help distribute those items to local communities.
Other local arts institutions participating in the campaign include the African American Museum of Dallas, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Crow Museum of Asian Art of The University of Texas at Dallas, Dallas Museum of Art, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, The Nasher Sculpture Center, and the newly-formed Gossypion Investments group of cultural consultants.
In addition to Dallas-Fort Worth, Weems has taken the “Resist COVID/Take 6!” campaign to Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Savannah, and New York City.
Here’s where the billboards in DFW are located:
2054 Rosedale St, “No te preocupes, volveremos a darnos la mano”
813 Hemphill St, “Don’t worry, we’ll hold hands again”
2621 Long Avenue, “La Vida es Bella!”
2100 NE 28th Street, “Life is Beautiful”
2806 E Illinois, “No te preocupes, volveremos a darnos la mano”
3435 E Illinois, “Don’t worry, we’ll hold hands again”
7065 Great Trinity Forest Way, “Life is Beautiful”
4030 W Davis, “La Vida es Bella!”
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