Authenticity & Community

In the past I've talked about the inspiration I draw from the natural beauty of South Florida. It is true that in many of my pieces I pay tribute to the wonderful sights and people who I've had the privilege of encountering.

Something I haven't talked about as much is the other end of this truth, which is how our art impacts our own sense of community and belonging. Art is at it's best when it tells an authentic story. While there are universal themes that we can all relate to, there are specific cultural notes that tell the story of a place or people. Our relationship to the beach and sun is a very different one than the people who peruse the beaches of Southern California.

I'm a proud member of not only the other artists in the area that tell our stories but the people who live these stories each and every day. Too often I see the temptation for artists to emulate the work of someone else rather than tell the truth that only they could. A lot of this temptation comes from a feeling of being lost and seeking the recognition of a community that they feel invisible to. This is why for this week I wanted to give a shout out to all locals, from the business owners to the artists and everyone in between. This is our community and we share it.

We're all in this together.

- Amanda J.

Amanda Johnson