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Know What You’re Voting For

21c and Amplifier recently teamed up on a new mural installation in Gano Alley

It’s time to make sure your voice, and vision, for our country are heard this year. We recently teamed up Amplifier to transform Gano Alley with a simple message…

KNOW WHAT YOU’RE VOTING FOR.

“Our goal for this installation is to promote important issues during this election season. We aren’t telling people WHO to vote for, but rather reminding them WHAT they are voting for. Because if we’ve learned anything in 2020 it’s that this election is about more than just the presidency, Senators, State representatives and Judges all play huge roles in how our society operates.” – 21c Cincinnati Museum Manager, Michael Hurst

We sat down with 21c Cincinnati Museum Manager, Michael Hurst, to learn more about the collaboration between 21c, Amplifier Art, For Freedoms and The Wide Awakes in creating this brightly colored voting mural.

How did this partnership come together?
MH: Amplifier is a design lab that builds art to amplify the voices of grassroots movements. They work with a community of social change partners, to build symbols, language, and distribution strategies that can change the national narrative. They draw from a deep portfolio of artists to commission new art, then take the work and distribute it through creative space hacks, reaching new audiences and driving real change.
I first found out about Amplifier at the For Freedoms Conference in LA back in February. On the last day of sessions there were tables set up and completely covered with all these amazing images, 24”x18” prints by artists like Shepard Fairey and Ryan Oakley and Thomas Wimberly.

Fast forward 6 months and I’m at 21c, trying to figure out how to create a public program within the limitations of this “new normal.” And something made me think of that table at the For Freedoms Conference so I looked at the Amplifier website and come to find out they’ve commissioned hundreds of artists to make artwork that can be used to “amplify” messages. With the election coming up I thought it’d be a great opportunity to make a mural that doesn’t focus on one thing, but rather focus on everything! In the end we are telling people to vote without telling them WHO to vote for, rather by reminding them WHAT they are voting for. So the collaboration happened when Amplifier commissioned this amazing art and made it available for people like us to paste it up. And of course there was the opportunity through social media with Amplifier to share our message and reach a larger group of people.

Can you tell us a little more about the artists who designed the posters?
MH: The artists who designed these posters were all commissioned by Amplifier for different campaigns. There are around 100 artists represented on our wall, give or take. And the cool part about the cross promotion on Instagram is that artists in Alaska and California and New York have reached out to ask about the project and express gratitude for having their artwork included in the mural. But TBH, it’s me who is grateful because without their art and their designs, the fair use availability of it on Amplifier.org we wouldn’t even have the mural.

How long was the process to get them posted?
MH: From start to finish the pasting up of the posters took me and Eli Meiners, 21c Senior Director of Museum Operations, about 16 hours to install 338 posters spread out over 2 days.

Help spread the message! Amplifier’s mission is to provide people with tools for civic engagement, so every artwork they commission is available on their website as a free high resolution download. Simply download and print to share this artwork in your community!

Don’t have a way to print? Join us for Metropole at Home Friday, October 30 and Saturday, October 31 and we’ll send a poster home with you! Each month, we’ll highlight a special take-home menu by chef Vanessa Miller, featured beverage pairings and a way to experience art from home. This month, we’re featuring For… Freedom, 2020 by Lyndon Barrois Sr. and a special video by The Wide Awakes.

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IMPORTANT INFORMATION: COVID-19 (Coronavirus)