PINK WEEK 2012 NEWS FLASH:
CALL FOR ARTISTS, DEADLINE 10/15
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Pink Week has returned to its conceptual roots. In our current economic and environmental state it doesn’t seem to make sense to spend monetary or natural resources the way we have in the past here at pink week, not to mention the hefty time investment required as well.
Founder, Gioia Fonda, has been rethinking the relevance of this ongoing project for years now and has come to a place where she’d simply rather focus her limited energies on some of her other projects (painting, teaching full-time, co-managing a gallery, local art activism and spending quality time with friends and family just to name a few). That said, the idea of quitting pink week altogether after all these years also just doesn’t quite feel right. So many amazing people have contributed to this project, so many interesting discoveries have been made and so much creativity as been given form over the years that quitting seems no way to honor all that collective effort and energy.
Each October, with the increasing onslaught of pink product placement for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, has left Gioia with a conflicted sense of both defeat and resolve with regards to the role of pink in our lives. On the one hand, she appreciates the dazzling array of goods available in pink just in time for the holiday. But, on the other hand, the pink ribbon movement has essentially hijacked the color altogether (not just for October but for most of the year) and is for the most part an ineffectual campaign that she hates to encourage or support. You can learn more about the problem of pinkwashing at the wonderful website Think Before You Pink. In the years before Breast Cancer Awareness Month became a national campaign, it was already a challenge to get folks to reconsider their attitude towards pink, in the years since as this movement has gained momentum it has become nearly impossible. As discouraging as this trend is, as an artist, an avid user of colors and a teacher of color theory, Gioia sees the need to liberate colors from all bogus moorings more critical than ever.
Pink Week is, and always has been, a conceptual art piece. The goal has never been to make pink week a commercial holiday a la Hallmark. Rather, the objectives have been to use art to foster a reexamination of both our preconditioned responses to color (especially pink) and the role holidays and art play in our contemporary lives.
Today, that goal remains the same. Each November, as we enter into the “holiday season” give yourself a chance to examine what holidays actually mean to you. Channel Linus Van Pelt a little. What is the purpose of a holiday? What do you enjoy about holidays? What do you dread about them? Why do you celebrate this one and not that one? Imagine a pie chart of any holiday and section it off into different pieces with labels like tradition, habit, religion, culture, consumerism, obligation and seasonal fun. What does that pie look like for you? Is that the pie you want?
While you are at it, try to really see all the colors all around you, just enjoy the optic sensation of all those reflecting light waves. You’ve probably been taking that for granted. It’s pretty amazing if you slow down a bit and observe the vast spectrum surrounding you. Let any meaning or feelings you normally associate with any color just fall away for a week. It’s harder than you think. Seek the pinks if you’d like or renew your enjoyment of any hue. Once you’ve got the hang letting go of your hang-ups, get a little synesthetic exercise in as you challenge your other senses to experience color for a while.
You can throw your own pink week party, start a pink pinning folder on Pinterest or make a commitment to any one color this second week of November simply in the way you dress. Additionally, we encourage you to document your pink week activities/discoveries and add to them to our Pink Week Facebook page.
In closing, Happy Pink Week to you (or any color week for that matter)! Let’s let the colors be! Help spread the word, pink is a color, not a cause! And lastly, we sincerely thank you for participating.