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Fighting violence with art

Cody Finney / The Arbiter


Using art to get out a message is not a new tactic. Street artists and awareness campaigns have been doing it for years. It’s no secret why art is such a good tool for awareness, an art installation begets interest in people, where a pamphlet filled with statistics and paragraphs upon paragraphs would do just the opposite, no matter how interesting or high-priority the issue at hand.

Particularly for students, some of whom barely have time to get a full eight hours of sleep, an art installation can provide the information quickly and easily. And with all the events happening on campus for the campaign, One Million Bones, it makes it easier for students to get involved, as well as hear the message.

There’s something indisputably powerful about seeing an art installation rather than reading a pamphlet.

“Art is the chosen way to raise awareness. When people see a visual petition, it’s more powerful than words,” said Jamie Lish, coordinator for the Idaho section of One Million Bones, a campaign to raise awareness of genocides and other atrocities happening around the world.

They will use both the making of the bones and the display of the bones to support their cause.

Just as important to the cause is the process of making the bones.

“Even the making of the bones is very healing,” Lish said.

When students get together to make the bones for the main installation, they know that they all share the same goal and it allows more students to get involved without any large time commitment, with the bone-making sessions lasting only a few hours.

Alex Clifford, a freshman business major, was the student correspondent for a bone-making event in Towers Hall on Nov 3. Alex chose to help plan the event as part of a service learning project.

“I thought this one would get me more involved, because it’s for a bigger cause,” Clifford said.

With students and other caring citizens making bones all across the country, One Million Bones is indeed a huge project.

One Million Bones is clever in its construction and in its execution, by getting students and other citizens involved in making the bones it creates a more unified experience for everyone involved.

“I think (the students) have a better understanding of what’s going on. It’s not just raising money, it’s for a monument in D.C,” Clifford said.

The One Million Bones project is clever in its construction and in its execution. By getting students and other citizens involved in making the bones it creates a more unified experience for everyone involved. Instead of just seeing photos of 1,000,000 bones on the National Mall, students across the country will be able to say, “I made one of those bones, I helped create that.”
Not only does the project create a powerful message about genocide, it also unifies people and students across the country around this one cause.


About Zoe Colburn (0 Articles)
Zoe is a freshman Communications major who spends far too much time holed up in her room watching movies. She hopes to someday be an entertainment journalist.