Cause and Affect

Project Onward has a distinct relationship to the events of 2020. The neurodiverse nature of our artist community greatly impacts their perceptions of and responses to national and global crises. Many of our artists naturally process and understand their thoughts and emotions through their artwork. This exhibit showcases their artistic responses to the many tumultuous recent events.

Cause is a reason for an action or condition, a catalyst for some form of change. In spring of 2020, fear, sickness, anger, doubt, hate, isolation, and loneliness reached a boiling point. Some political scholars and scientists have predicted these types of biological, economical, and societal catastrophes. However, no one could really understand the impact it would have on our daily lives. 2020 has been bad for some and worse for others. The visceral and emotional impacts have struck people from every nation. Notably, here in the United States the Covid-19 virus has swept through our nation like a tornado with no end. Civil unrest for marginalized people reached its peak in early summer when footage of police brutality was brought to the forefront of public attention. These casual displays of violence took us to a new level of fear for the unity of our nation.

Life as we know it will forever change. How we deal with it will be a true testament to who we are as individuals, as a nation, and as a global society.

Affect, as we express it in the exhibit, is both the emotional toll of recent global events and the commitment of our organization to making a difference.

Our artists have chosen to document and comment on both the extremity of what has passed this year and what they hope the rest of the year can bring. We can still question, hope, believe and fight for a more just, peaceful, and healing nation and world.

All art is available for purchase! Shop below:

"Black Girls Rock" by Alfred Banks
"USA" by Luke Shemroske
"Stay Safe" by Stephon Doby
"Rise Together" by Stephon Doby
"Road to Redemption" by Stephon Doby
"BLM Protester" by Dana Baker
"Finding Hope in Dark Times" by Dana Baker
"Covid-19" by Luke Shemroske
"Swordfish" by Luke Shemroske
"Got a Gun" by Luke Shemroske
"Under the Mask" by Bill Douglas
"BLM Protest" by George Zuniga
"I Can't Breathe" by George Zuniga
"Meditative Flower Study" by Luke Shemroske
"Trying to Fight Covid-19" by Molly McGrath
"Mask of the Red Death" by Cherylle Booker
"No Justice, No Peace" by Louis DeMarco
"Black Lives Matter" by Louis DeMarco
"Silence is Violence" by Louis DeMarco
"Untitled" by Paul Kowalewski
"Pandemic Run" by Jacqueline Cousins Oliva
"Pandemic Walk" by Jacqueline Cousins Oliva
"Black Cats Matter" by Ruby Bradford
"BLM Protesters" by Jacqueline Cousins Oliva
"Looking Forward" by David Holt
"Covid-19 Saftey Precautions" by Adam Hines
"Black Lives Matter" by Allen McNair
"Christopher Columbus Takedown" by Janno Juguilon
"Wear a Mask" by Allen McNair
"What is the World Coming To?" by David Hence
"Hiyello" by David Hence
"Grandma" by David Hence
"Man" by David Hence
"Pain" by David Hence
"Black Lives Matter" by David Hence
"Pour One Out" by David Hence
"Pandemic" by Bill Douglas
"Covid-19" by Bill Douglas
"Civil Rights Leaders" by Adam Hines
"Cat Heroes" by Ruby Bradford
"Prayer" by Michael Smith
"Black Lives Matter" by Bill Douglas
"Ruby Cat Wears a Face Mask" by Ruby Bradford
"Power 2 the People" by Sereno Wilson
"Woman and Cat" by Bill Douglas

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Project Onward believes we can inspire change by using art to promote empathy and reduce the stigma of mental illness and developmental disabilities. We seek to improve the self-image of artists by emphasizing the social and economic value of their work.


You can directly contribute to this belief and help improve the lives of each Project Onward artist by purchasing their work. Our online shop is open 24/7, and half of the sale for each original piece goes directly to the artist.