Art | Activism | Action

Art | Activism | Action

No one will forget 2020. Millions of people across the world joined together to speak out against the murder of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police. Coupled with the Covid-19 pandemic, what emerged was a global expression of pain, hope, anger and support through works of art. Many art pieces were painted murals on plywood that covered the windows of businesses. While they first served as a gallery of shields from protests they quickly became messages of hope, unity love and support for the Black Lives Matter movement and the fight for social justice.

In Columbus, the Greater Columbus Arts Council and CAPA partnered to launch #ArtUnitesCbus on June 1, 2020. This initiative employed Columbus-based visual artists to paint murals on the plywood installed over the broken windows at the Ohio Theatre and the Arts Council office. Other businesses throughout the city joined in and by the end of June more than 200 murals had been created on plywood throughout the city.

The murals’ messages ranged from support for Black Lives Matter to tributes to George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, to messages of love and hope. The public quickly advocated for preserving the murals so that we would not forget this heart-rending but galvanizing moment in history. One of the goals of this book is to make sure that this community-wide art movement lives on as more than just a moment–the messages created should resonate for years to come and serve as inspiration for continued dialogue and work towards social justice.

The Greater Columbus Arts Council and Warhol & WALL ST. created Art | Activism | Action, a 12” x 12” 225-page, hard cover book to memorialize the murals, images, videos, words and movement of 2020. The book serves as a time capsule and interactive experience that showcases the pain and struggle of the events of that summer, but also the beauty of the art, all while telling Columbus’ story and continuing the conversation and push for action in our city. More than 500 books will be given out free to artists, schools and community partners thanks to the generous donations of our community sponsors.

Art | Activism | Action will be available for purchase at the following retail and gift stores:

  • Experience Columbus Visitors Center (277 W. Nationwide Blvd.)
  • Wexner Center for the Arts (1871 N. High St.)

Quantities are limited, please to contact the store first for hours and availability.

To explore some of the interactive content available in the book visit the Art | Activism | Action Virtual Experience.

Art | Activism | Action
Foreword by Hanif Abdurraqib
Closing by Dr. Melissa Crum

Contributors include:
200+ Columbus artists
Christie Angel, LC Johnson, Aramis Sundiata, Charlie Stewart
Sterling Carter, Donte Woods-Spikes
Chris Bournea, Tom Hanks, Brittany Moseley, Dr. Carlotta Penn, Marshall Shorts, Erica Thompson, Micah Walker
Cynthia Amoah, Barbara Fant, Tifani Kendrick, Tyiesha Radford-Shorts
Shellee Fisher, John Landry, Tariq Tarey

Creative Direction by: Warhol & WALL ST.

Sponsors: The ArtUnitesCbus effort and Art | Activism | Action were made possible by