Artists Maya Gelfman and Roie Avidan spent the past year traveling across the country in their van, documenting their own public art works. They decided to completely let go of their past life and spend their time doing what they love. They talked about some repeated motifs and symbolisms in their artwork and how it related to real life. For example, the use of yarn in their works represent how one ages with time. My favorite part of their presentation was the story they gave. At one point, they were struggling to find meaning in what they were doing. Basically, they met someone who saw their artwork on a public beach and the artwork spoke to them. The old lady who saw the artwork explained her story and how the yarned words, “Don’t give up” meant so much to her. Her daughter was a drug addict and had been human trafficked for the past 2 years and on the verge of suicide. The phrase, “don’t give up” had never been more applicable. Seeing those three words tangled in a dead tree on a public beach had given her hope when she needed it most. When Roie explained the story, it gave me shivers throughout my body. I think art can often be overlooked as a valid form of communication. However, I believe art is a beautiful way to interact with other people; it can provide such a deep connection to one another that can’t easily be achieved otherwise.
The artwork that Maya and Roie create is an interesting medium of storytelling. Similar to some poems that we’ve read so far, the Mind the Heart project is an artistic form of communication. Through temporary art made from yarn, they spread positive messages in public spaces. I also find it astounding to see the amount of passion these people have for their art. They sacrificed their comfortable life to be traveling artists. This reminds me of perspective, and how valuable it is. A simple art piece they create has the power to touch everyone on a deeper level. The anecdote about the lady at the beach was so moving. It’s incredible to think about how what may seem like trash to someone can have the same power to touch someone else’s heart.