It Is Not Ok/I Can

This project addresses what governs the way we act in society.  Laws dictate certain actions, but we all have a personal set of standards that direct how we relate to the world around us.  These personal standards are not often stated out loud, which causes confusion when people don’t know what we expect from them and when we don’t know what is expected of us.  Collaborating with middle and high school students that I work with at the Youth Dreamers, we created and hung signs that read “It is not ok to…” in a row of vacant storefronts in downtown Baltimore.  The signs were deemed inappropriate for the business district and we had to take them down, but not before the project was written up by Robbie Whelan in his blog in the Maryland Daily Record and we had found other installation and exhibition opportunities.

After “It is not ok” was hung on Baltimore Street, I decided that there needed to be a second part to the piece.  “It is not ok” was all about standards and putting limits on one’s actions.  To balance this there needed to be posters that also stated the possibilities of what one could do.  This idea became “I can” posters.  Again I collaborated with students from the Youth Dreamers and we also partnered with a graphic design class from Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) to install both parts of the project on the Brown Center.  This partnership is continuing this spring.  I am working with MICA interns to develop a webpage for the project, continue public installations, and possibly create a book.

If you are interested in participating in the project lesson plans and a release form are attached. Feel free to contact me with any questions!

It is not ok and I can.pdf It is not ok and I can.pdf
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