My group is structuring our group in chronology (past, present, and future implications of anti-vaccine movements), and my topic falls within the “present” category. Our chapter is specifically geared towards explaining the history behind the anti-vaccine movement, how it is playing out today during the COVID-19 pandemic, and future ideas and implications of how we can combat these anti-vax ideals moving forward, as artists, scientists, and as a society as a whole.
My chapter will be titled, “Art in the Quest to Vaccinate the World”
Meeting with the (anti) anti-vax group this week during class provided me with some great insight into the different facets of the anti-vax movement and how art can be used as a medium through this. We are structuring our group in chronology (past, present, and future implications of anti-vaccine movements), and my topic falls within the “present” category.
My first blog post was titled, “Racial Spillover of COVID-19 – Art as Political Activism.” Since this was posted at the beginning of April, the true extent of the racial injustice and disproportionate impact of COVID-19 was just starting to come to light and splashed on the news media (Cruz). The virus itself as well as its secondary effects, such as economic and social injustices, have perpetuated deep harm to the Black community (Ebrahim 2020).
While watching Spaceship Earth, something that particularly struck me was the psychological toll that staying isolated with the same seven other people for two years would take on an individual. The Human Experiment was a book written by Jane Poynter, one of the individuals in this artificial ecosystem known as Biosphere II.
The media frenzy surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic has been dominated by jargon that has become all-too-familiar: flattening the curve, social distancing, herd immunity, and vaccination development. As the conversation has shifted as the pandemic has progressed, something that has been on the minds of forward-thinking scientists and social activists alike has been vaccine availability.
On Friday night, as I was browsing TV channels with my family, we stumbled upon ABC 20/20’s segment “Siegfried & Roy: Behind the Magic,” which centered around Siegfried Fischbacher and Roy Horn, two legendary entertainers whose rise to fame and notoriety can be attributed to their larger-than-life show in Las Vegas, which prominently featured white tigers and lions.
The traditional types of visual art, most stereotypically involving pieces such as an oil painting on canvas, can come at the expense of the environment. For example, while the added chemical fillers and ingredients in paint do contribute to its “luminosity, stability, and affordability, they often impose undesirable health risks” (Weintraub).
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of the lives of individuals across the globe, including those of all genders, racial and ethnic backgrounds, ages, and abilities. Although COVID-19 has impacted a wide spectrum of people at the intersection of various identities, it would be remiss to say that this virus has infiltrated these people’s lives in identical ways. Rather, communities who hold historically marginalized and oppressed identities, including people of color and people with disabilities, are being affected in a disproportionate, negative way.