THE PROCESS OF PEACE


ADAM THORMAN

alonetogether
Archival Ink Jet Print
2009

The first of John Cage's Rules and Hints for Students and Teachers is "Find a place you trust, and then try trusting it for a while." This statement seems especially relevant when considering the subject of Peace in art. While some may take this as settling, I’ve always read it as a recommendation to take the time to get to know your subject matter with an engagement beyond familiarity. One of the strategies of peace workers is to introduce individuals on both sides of a war to each other. In the Middle East, for example, Jews and Arabs are mostly caricatures to each other. There are Peace Camps that allow Arab and Jewish youth to get to know each other and form friendships. This small action can go a long ways towards forging a resolution to that war.

One of the main subjects I make work about is intimacy. I take Cage’s ideas about trust to heart and keep them in mind when making images. In alonetogether the pull between public and private centers around an implicit trust. In a public park in the middle of the city, the couple embraces, creating a private, intimate space. To those who don’t allow themselves to trust, this may seem naive, but I can’t help but read the two leaning into each other to create one as an act of rebellion broadcast across the city with “trust” echoing out across the avenues.

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