IE: Portraits of Courage
5 cities, two years!
There is beauty and dignity within any person. As an artist, I seek to Illuminate the Essence of those I paint. Additionally, we have decided not to stand by and watch well-meaning Christians drive their LGBTQ sisters and brothers to despair and too often, self-harm, in an effort to follow church authority, via "exclusion policy" of November 2015. The irony being, Christ commands us to love one another - even those we may not understand.
The Hero's Journey! as described by Carol Ann Pearson is the less travelled road of the LGBT Mormons.
This project is about painting their portraits and telling their stories. A visual testemant documenting their innate dignity, wholeness and beauty.
They are greeting the world with courage, strength and compassion; and building an inspirational legacy.
"We often pray for eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts to understand. This project is designed to help open the eyes, ears and hearts of those who wish to better understand their LGBT brothers and sisters. It is also intended to give names and faces to the stories of some of our LGBT fellows."
The money you contribute will help us paint 20 legacy-portraits of LGBTQ Mormons who share an important message for us: there is room for all of us at church!
Will you join us? Donate, Share, Get Involved!
Now in Huffington Post, King 5 TV evening news, Religion News and Everett Herald
We showed in Provo, Utah; September 22-25,
We showed at Schack Art Center in greater Seattle; December 17th - 30th; with a private reception on Sunday, December 18th, 2016
Showing April 20 - May 12, 2017 Artspace Everett Lofts.
Showing Seattle Central College, September and October 2017, with opening reception September 27th, 2017
now Showing at Presidents Office at Seattle Central College, through December 2017
We are scheduling a show in the SF Bay Area through the Graduate Theological Union, UC Berkeley for early 2018
in 2018 we hope to return to Utah!!!!
There is also an opportunity here to learn and practice art. This project is enormous and your creative help matters. We typically meet on Monday evenings but other times are also available. Message me here.
In 2 years we raised $29,000.00, produced 34 portraits and shown in FIVE cities
(Provo, Utah; Everett, WA; Seattle, WA; Berkeley CA; and Salt Lake City; Utah)
We can’t thank you enough for all your support in time, money and energy. There is much more art and healing we want to give. We want to add 12 new portraits, show in 5 more cities. And add art classes. Will you help us grow? www.gofundme.com/portraitsofcourage
-We plan to hang at Affirmation in SLC, this coming July 2018
-We will be beginning an online catalog of all the art and our journey
-We will be work with "Berkeley" to publish a hard copy
-We will be adding more portraits
Money: where has it gone?
21 months ago, we started with nothing.
Initial cost of supplies: $5000.00
Since then we have painted 30, mostly larger than 2x2'
portraits of LGBTQ Mormons. Most have never been for sale in order keep this historic collection together. They are conservatively valued at $60,000.00
We have raised $29,500, so far....
We have also delivered and shown at:
-Affirmation, 2016, Provo, UT at Writ & Pen, 4 days
-Schack Art Center in Everett, WA , 6 weeks
-Artspace Everett Lofts, Everett, WA, 4 weeks
-Seattle Central College, main gallery. Seattle, WA, 4 weeks
-President's office Seattle Central College, Seattle WA
-Badé Museum, Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, 3 months!
(average minimum cost travel to and from, $1,000 x 6=$6,000)
Thousands of hours phoning and writing to spread the word and garner contributions ($50,000.00 time spent)
Please keep in mind that living expenses must be paid all along the way. As the main artist, this whole project has cost around $100,000.00
WE Have Raised $29,500 so far!
Where has the rest come from ????
-Private art commissions to Artist, Melinda Hannah
-Working for free, in spare time, LOL!
-Hundreds of amazing volunteers
For the powerful social leaders within the Mormon community, who used their considerable power and influence to spread the gossip that artist, Melinda Hannah, is greedy and is doing this to exploit you and get rich? Your gossip has greatly limited our healing work. You have aided in the diminishing of much more healing that might have occurred.
I am a portrait artist in Seattle, Washington seeking to reveal the innate beauty and dignity within each of us through art.
Growing up Mormon, I was very familiar with the Church’s position on LGBTQ people. At the same time, my own life was full of kind, gifted, and amazing people from many different walks of life, including the LGBTQ community. I came to appreciate our creator’s grand plan of diversity, and as the Church’s position seemed to grow more intolerant, I witnessed first-hand the pain it caused people I’d grown to love as deeply as my own family.
The Policy Leak in November of 2015 was a turning point for me. I could no longer be silent as an ally. As I heard the stories of pain, death, and the decimation of families—which are a cornerstone to our religion—I came to believe that the Policy was not inspired by the God I knew, who loved and cherished his LGBTQ children.
Through this art exhibit, I seek to open the hearts of those inside our religion who view others as “different,” and hope to offer a pathway that helps us love one another unconditionally—the same way I know God loves each of us.
Please join me at the SLC....., for our exhibit “Journeys of Faith: Portraits of LGBTQ Mormons.” I ask for your help to continue to grow this project, and join us on our journey, for it is most certainly one we all walk together.