Finding Our Shared Humanity

First
Here at Great American Art, we do what we do specifically because we believe, strongly, in the inherent self-worth of all people - simply because they're human beings. Our clients believe in that too. It's this shared belief that brings us together, with the goal of expressing that belief tangibly through design and art.

Ultimately, we want the people who exist within any space - whether it's a hospital, an office, a school, anywhere and everywhere - to know that they matter. That their sense of life, wellness, and well-being matters. That the spaces and environments they are in were created specifically for them. That their humanity is a beautiful and wonderful thing, and we want them to see that in an environment that reflects back all the beauty and wonder that defines them as human beings.

Any loss of human life to violence is one life too many. 59 should be unthinkable. For those families affected by the tragedy in Las Vegas, we offer our deepest condolences and sympathies.

Second
We talk a lot about the concept of 'connections'. Connecting to our spaces, connecting to those around us, and the effects and outcomes that act of connecting can lead to because of all the things that help define us as human beings.

I recently found an article that explores this through the lens of architecture. A core concept that the article explores is that of the 'threshold'. That point in physical space where one transitions from one space to another, from one experience to another. The act of passage, of movement, of change, is a powerful one. It's also something that all of us as human beings share, through our shared humanity.

To read the article: Click Here

Yes, change can be scary, because it can lead to the unknown. Yes, movement can be unsettling, disorienting, and uncertain because we don't always know what awaits us, and it often forces us to leave what has become comfortable and familiar behind. So what do we do?

Our first instinctive response as human beings is to look to our environment. Partly because we seek cues and clues from our surroundings as to what we should do, where should we go next, and how should we feel? Primarily though, in times of anxiety, stress, or trauma, I think we instinctively look to our environments to answer a single, fundamental question: "Am I alone?".

As the article's author beautifully articulates, architecture (and by extension design and art) works to answer this question by reflecting and reminding us of our connectedness in spite of our differences. We are not alone. We have one another, and we can take comfort in that.

Spaces designed by human beings for other human beings, reminding us that because we are all human, we are connected. And because of that none of us are alone.

That's a beautiful thing.

If you have thoughts that you'd like to share, absolutely please do so in the Comments section below.

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About Ted Weil