The Democracy & Belonging Forum, an initiative from the Othering and Belonging Institute (OBI) at the University of California, Berkeley, teamed up with Fine Acts to produce a collection of powerful visual artworks on the topic of Bridging & Belonging.
Together, we commissioned 40 artists to work on the topic, through the prism of solutions and hope.
We also launched an open call for illustrations, where we looked for existing works that focus on a hopeful vision for our collective future. We received 222 submissions by 88 artists from all around the world, and selected 30 finalists.
The goal was to create a new set of visuals—that anyone can use, free of charge—to accompany stories and narratives that focus on bridging and belonging and show that this is a possible future, in response to the current challenges we are facing as humanity. To that end, the collection reflects the following prompts that were given to the artists: What does belonging look like in practice? How can we visualize the act of bridging diverse communities? What would our world look like if we overcame the cleavages that often divide society?
All the works are now published under an open license on TheGreats.co, a unique platform from Fine Acts for free social impact art so that anyone—including educators, activists, and non-profits globally—can use them in their work. These works are licensed under a Creative Commons license that allows free use and adaptation—but you must always give credit, and never use them for commercial purposes.
Banner art is by Washington-based artist Burcu Köleli, thumbnail art is by Baltimore-based Brazilian artist Camila Leão, and sidebar art is by Michigan-based Vietnamese-American artist Kim Nguyen.