Can art make a difference?
Sandy Hook memorializes the twenty children and six staff members killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012.
When the shooting happened I felt compelled to do something. Perhaps it is my 15 years as a pre-school director, perhaps it is the thought of my nieces and nephews who trustingly go off to school every day. Certainly it was because of our short social memory and the way important events fade quickly after they are no longer in the headlines.
In thinking about how to represent the children and school staff who were killed, I settled on the idea of using teddy bears for the children and apples for the adults.
After spending several days purchasing individual bears and apples, I began taking the school portraits. It got harder and harder as I worked on the book; and taking the group photo left me in tears. I can’t help but think of all the group photos those children will never be in: graduation, weddings, and countless family portraits. The photos are laid out in yearbook style and feature the name, birth dates and death dates for each person killed.
All of the artist’s profits will be donated to the United Way fund for the Newton community. The teddy bears were donated to the Morgan Hill (CA) Police Department to serve as comfort to children as needed.
Original portraits by the artist. Accordion bound, archival inkjet printing on Rives BFK. ©2013
Edition of 100, $100.