We believe citizenship is defined by participation, not by ideology.

Through non-partisan nationwide programming, we use art as a vehicle for participation to deepen public discussions on civic issues and core values. We are a hub for artists, arts partners, and citizens who want to be more engaged in public life.

What we do

Billboards

For Freedoms outdoor activations invite artists to use the tools of art and advertising to encourage civic engagement. We believe that if artists’ voices replace advertising across the country, public discourse will become more nuanced.

Town Halls

Traditionally used by politicians as forums to connect with their constituencies, answer questions, and promote their campaigns, For Freedoms Town Halls provide safe platforms for conversations that seek to encourage a more active, collaborative, inclusive, and empathetic community. Town Halls bring together experts in various disciplines such as art, design, policy making, and community organizing in cities across the country to discuss issues related to freedom.

Exhibitions

For Freedoms exhibitions engage local perspectives on Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms: affirming the inalienable human rights of freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.

Lawn Signs and more...

Participate

In 2018, For Freedoms launched the largest creative collaboration in our nation's history, the
 50 State Initiative. During the midterm election season, we held over 600 concurrent decentralized public events across the country with over 250 partners that reflected a multiplicity of voices and sparked a national dialogue about art, education, commerce, and politics. On our platform, you’ll see all of the incredible activations that happened this past fall, in addition to others that the For Freedoms community continues to put on today.

50 STATE INITIATIVE & BEYOND

In 2018, For Freedoms launched the largest creative collaboration in our nation's history, the
 50 State Initiative. During the midterm election season, we held over 600 concurrent decentralized public events across the country with over 250 partners that reflected a multiplicity of voices and sparked a national dialogue about art, education, commerce, and politics. On our platform, you’ll see all of the incredible activations that happened this past fall, in addition to others that the For Freedoms community continues to put on today.

Community Feed

5
Jul
activation

Four | For Freedoms

Ogden First will exhibit twelve For Freedoms billboards and activate their community with For Freedoms lawn signs. The exhibit, titled FOUR | FOR FREEDOMS opens with a reception from 6-9 p.m. Friday, July 5 at PLATFORMS, at 25th Street and Adams Avenue, as part of the city’s First Friday Art Stroll and is on display through the end of August. Billboards include: Hank Willis Thomas: Us is Them Hank Willis Thomas: They Are US Hank Willis Thomas: All Li es Matter Paula Crown: Hurt People Hurt People Mitch Epstein: The Common Air For Freedoms: Four Freedoms Eric Gottesman: Where Do We Go From Here Zoe Buckman: Grab Em By The Ballots Zoe Buckman: Inaction is Apathy Sanford Biggers: Just Us
July 5, 2019
Exhibition
partner

City Club of Cleveland

The City Club of Cleveland is one of the nation's great free speech forums. A product of the Progressive Era, City Club was founded in 1912 and are one of the nation's oldest continuous independent free speech forums, renowned for our tradition of debate and discussion. For more than a hundred years, all of our speakers—from sitting presidents to community activists—have answered unfiltered, unrehearsed questions directly from the audience.
artist

Amira Karaoud

Documentary photographer covers stories related to women's rights and immigrants rights. I primarily work with the Arab American community in the US and Arab s in the MENA regions.
gallery

Freedom from Fear; Women in Politics

Two women who are living examples of what it means to be an advocate, an ally and a revolutionary for everyday people; Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Tiffany Cabán. As a Congresswoman and Queens District Attorney frontrunner, these progressive latinas use their power and platform to speak truth to injustice, systemic racism and immigrants' rights; they are my heroes.
FreedomFromFear
artist

Nicole Millman

Female photojournalist documenting history as it happens as well as women in the male-dominated field of politics.
FreedomFromFear
gallery

Taking Aim

Power, Gender, Firearms
artist

Linda Lighton

My visual thoughts swing from social issues and fear of humanity growing cold to a celebration of the wonder of life. My vision has come to be a plea for respect, dignity and a connection with other peoples. I want to visualize my hopes and fears and enlarge our circle of understanding. My work has mostly been based in organic forms from nature. Lately however, a mother's worries about the world has subsumed my reverence for the natural world and wondered at the glorification of violence and the elements that inflict them. Guns seem to be flowering like weeds with a reverence for brute force and a resistance to humanity. What I have found is that you cannot have democracy at the end of a gun. Democracy is founded on civility and civil discourse. In 'Taking Aim,' I offer viewers an invitation to partake in this very loaded topic.
gallery

Not My America

A poster series giving awareness to gross injustices currently taking place in the U.S.
Other
artist

Brandon McNeely

Visual Art Director with a hobby of creating activist posters.
12
Jul
activation

MONUMENTAL

MONUMENTAL is a series of public, contemporary artworks and community engagement programs that explore, question, and transform the role monuments play within society. Comprised of a series of temporary art installations in Denver, Colorado, the project endeavors to reimagine how public icons can better represent the diversity of the communities, foster civic engagement, and enliven public spaces. MONUMENTAL highlights five artworks by local, national, and international artists, illuminating various interpretations of the relationship between monuments and our community, national identity, and changing world. By asking contemporary artists to respond to monuments’ role in forming civic identity, memorializing events, or creating a sense of place, the artworks in MONUMENTAL reveal the nuanced relationship communities have with public work and encourage a timely conversation. Artists: Andreas Greiner (Germany), Jaime Carrejo (Colorado), Rian Kerrane (Colorado), Noah Manos (Colorado), Nikki Pike (Colorado), Hank Willis Thomas and Emily Shur in collaboration with Eric Gottesman and Wyatt Gallery of For Freedoms (New York). MONUMENTAL is funded in part by the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation and the David and Laura Merage Foundation. Schedule: + Friday, July 12, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. (Unveiling of Nikki Pike’s Temporary Monument, which is on view through September 11, 2019) + Friday, September 20, 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. (Unveiling of Noah Manos’ Temporary Monument, which is on view through November 6, 2019) + Friday, November 15, 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. (Unveiling of Jaime Carrejo’s Temporary Monument, which is on view through January 31, 2020) Location: 14th Street between Champa and Stout Streets, Denver, 80202 (located at the plaza in front of Understudy)
July 12, 2019
18
Jun
activation

Hirshhorn Town Hall

FREE GET TICKETS: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/in-conversation-reimagining-norman-rockwells-america-tickets-60764237470 We strongly recommend claiming a ticket to ensure your seat. This program is expected to be at capacity. Questions? Email [email protected] Hirshhorn Members, email [email protected] What does America look like? Hank Willis Thomas, artist and co-founder of the For Freedoms artist collective, teamed up with Emily Shur, photographer and designer, to reimagine Norman Rockwell’s 1943 series Four Freedoms, inspired by Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1941 State of the Union address. Using the four freedoms articulated during Roosevelt’s speech—Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want, and Freedom from Fear—For Freedoms created an updated tableau that highlights a much more inclusive America than what was originally styled in Rockwell’s iconic scenes. Thomas and Shur will sit in conversation with New York Times critic and Still Processing podcast co-host Wesley Morris to discuss their powerful series “For Freedoms,” on view in Manifesto: Art x Agency, an exhibition exploring the work of artists who aim to effect change in the world around them. We encourage you to arrive early. Ring Auditorium seating is limited. Any open seats may be released to walk-up visitors 10 minutes before the program. Please e-mail [email protected] if you would like to request ASL interpretation for this program.
June 18, 2019
15
Jun
activation

By the People Festival

Founded in 2016 by artists Hank Willis Thomas and Eric Gottesman, For Freedoms is a platform for creative civic engagement, discourse, and direct action. Inspired by American artist Norman Rockwell’s paintings of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms (1941)—freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear—For Freedoms’ exhibitions, installations, and public programs use art to deepen public discussions on civic issues and core values, and to advocate for equality, dialogue, and civic participation. As a nexus between art, politics, commerce, and education, For Freedoms aims to inject anti-partisan, critical thinking that fine art requires into the political landscape through programming, exhibitions, and public artworks. In 2018, For Freedoms launched the 50 State Initiative: the largest creative collaboration in U.S. history. This barge installation will visit Georgetown on June 15-17, Capitol Riverfront on June 18-21, and Anacostia Park on June 22-23. Billboard designed by Jon Santos, 2016.
June 15, 2019

Our supporters

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