"If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I came to live out loud."
"All the arts we practice are apprenticeship; the big art is our life."
"To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong."
"Creativity can solve almost any problem. The creative act, the defeat of habit by originality, overcomes everything."
Thank you, Messieurs et Mesdames Emile Zola, M.C. Richards, Joseph Chilton Pearce, and George Lois, respectively! I am a big believer in quoting people wiser than myself.
To that end, I want to share -- in text and video form -- some words by several of the artists who participated in this year's Sing for Hope Pianos project here in New York City. These four artists, along with more than 100 others of equal talent and vision, donated their time over a period of months to bring the 88 pianos to life. All of their artworks, wildly diverse though they may be, are underscored by the same unmistakable generosity of spirit that seems to pour off of their paintbrushes, infusing their piano-canvases.
Below are some video peeks at these artists' piano processes. I hope that you've had a moment these last weeks to enjoy these piano artworks in their streetside spots across the five boroughs. And I hope that this Sunday, June 16, you'll join us when all 88 Sing for Pianos come together at Lincoln Center Plaza for a final hurrah before being donated to our partner schools, hospitals, and community organizations (more info here). Made possible by the Sing for Hope Pianos sponsor, Chobani yogurt, this one-day interactive open house on the Plaza is your chance to make your long-awaited Lincoln Center debut, with no practicing required! It's also a chance to enjoy some great free performances, get your own Chopstix or Chopin or showtune on, and get to know the artists in the videos below.
"Images of nebulae, Hubble telescope photos, giant swirling clouds... Every person who looks at this is helping to create the artwork by what their imagination brings out of it..."
- Marc Evan, Volunteer Artist, 2013 Sing for Hope Pianos
"During war period, ships were often painted in this pattern called Dazzle Camouflage... What's interesting here is actually you're taking a two-dimensional design, as it were, and you're draping it over a three-dimensional object..."
- Michael Miller, Volunteer Artist, 2013 Sing for Hope Pianos
"The top of the piano is based on a drawing that we collaborated on, with all the different characters you see in the street... We leave here energized even though we've worked an entire 8-hour day..."
- Martha VanEtten (1/3 of the women's art collective Girlometry), Volunteer Artist, 2013 Sing for Hope Pianos
"It's a celebration... Mary Lou Williams... Glenn Gould... Elena Kuschnerova... and the Broadway theme, which I felt was kind of New York!"
- Frederic Carpenter, Volunteer Artist, 2013 Sing for Hope Pianos
Filmed by The Bindery at The Sing for Hope Pianos Studio in midtown Manhattan.
This post is part of a series produced by The Huffington Post and Sing for Hope, to mark the latter's Sing for Hope Pianos project and its mission of "art for all". For more information, visit www.singforhope.org.