For the past 3 years, Compassion Arts has been presenting programs for exploring our relationship with other animals and the earth we share. Our primary event, Compassion Arts Festival, is held annually during the last 10 days of October. Our programs have featured a wide range of presentations by thought-provoking artists, writers, advocates, educators, and others working to inspire compassion and peace for all beings and the planet. This work has been possible through dedicated volunteers, supportive partnering organizations, and most especially the generous contributions of time and talent by our program presenters.
While it is our goal in the future to one day have a permanent Compassion Arts Center as our base, currently our project functions as a mobile arts initiative in different locations. Past events have been held at a variety of places that include Leonard Nimoy Theater at Symphony Space(NYC), Worcester Art Museum(MA), and PACE University (NY), as well as workshop spaces, churches, and art galleries. Past Compassion Arts Festival events have been possible through partnerships with participating artists and groups such as the Culture & Animals Foundation, Maple Farm Sanctuary, O’Hara Projects, LePamplemuse, Earthlands, and UCCM.
Our past programs from 2015, 2016, 2017 have featured the following guest presenters: Wildlife Photographer of the Year and photojournalist Jo-Anne McArthur, Farm Sanctuary co-founder and author Gene Baur, Lantern Books Publishing co-founder and author Martin Rowe, Beasts of Burden curator and artist Jane O’Hara, LePamplemuse founder and spoken word artist Donald Vincent, Peace Abbey Foundation co-founder Lewis Randa, poet and author Gretchen Primack, composer/musician Michael Harren, singer/songwriter Joy Askew, Vegan Nation radio host Marlene Narrow, Maple Farm Sanctuary co-founder Cheri Vandersluis, Vegan Parenting podcast host and performer Alfee Westgroves, Peace Meal Supper Club culinary artist Kevin Archer, John Yunker’s Sanctuary: A Radio Play performance by Our Hen House, film screening of Kedi documentary, educator/advocate Ayten Alkan, Environmental Humanities co- founder and writer Yanoula Athanassakis, interdisciplinary curator and writer Radhika Subramaniam, the World Premiere of “..And the Hummingbird Sings “ by composer Mihoko Suzuki about the late environmentalist Wangari Maathai, as well as contributing talks on humane education with HSUS , music performances by The Promise Is Home, a Unity workshop by World Peace Diet author Will Tuttle, interactive music and art with Dances for Universal Peace artists Arif Leninger & Amina Silk, Earthlands Collective Day hosted by Infinite Trees Project, Sound Alchemy with Nina Vecchi, and special guest presentations by past event Emcee’s including Vegucated filmmaker Marisa Miller Wolfson, author Dale Jamieson on the life and work of Tom Regan, and Brighter Green executive director Mia MacDonald.
FESTIVAL ARTISTS POSTERS
The festival images that are chosen for each year’s Compassion Arts Festival poster are selected from vegan artists who use their work for cultivating compassion for all life. We are immeasurably grateful to them for sharing their paintings with us and allowing the vision of their artistry to be the lens through which the heart of our festivals are represented. Paintings from 2015, 2016, 2017 are posted above by the following artists:
(Image #18 Jane O’Hara photo) Jane O’Hara – Artist and curator Jane O’Hara, is the creator of Beasts of Burden group exhibit featuring Moby and Jo-Anne McArthur, as well as author of the exhibit gallery book. Jane is a past Courage of Conscience Award honoree and a Culture & Animals Foundation grant recipient. Her art has been in shows and galleries in Boston, Los Angeles, New York, Rhode Island and Florida as well as private collections. She has presented talks at Worcester Art Museum, Symphony Space and Pace University. www.janeohara.com
(Image #19 Cyrus Mejia photo) Cyrus Mejia – Artist Cyrus Mejia is co-founder of Best Friends Animal Society and the co-founder of Raven Heart’s Gallery. The mission of his life’s work for animals – as an advocate, artist, and gallery founder – is to raise awareness through exploring the human-animal bond, and the expression of kindness and respect for all life. He is a past Culture & Animals Foundation grant recipient whose paintings can be found in both private and public collections as well as his gallery in Kanab, Utah. www.cyrusmejia.com
(Image #20 Linda G. Fisher photo ) Linda G. Fisher – Artist Linda G. Fisher is an animal advocate and the co-author of several published books about non-human species and birds. She is an animal intuitive and interspecies communicator currently writing a memoir of her experiences with the amazing sentient beings she has known. Her artwork can be found in private and public collections nationwide. She is Ojibway and Cherokee and a tribal member of Ojibway Nation. Her family is of the Catfish Clan. www.lindagfisher.com
(Image #21 Photo of Laurie or Two Trick Pony logo ) Laurie Johnston – Graphic design artist Laurie Johnston is the founder of Two Trick Pony, an eco-friendly vegan design arts company that creates prints, cards, and compassion inspired products that also help animals and the earth. Laurie’s company also hosts an informative and heart lifting newsletter as well as donating time and a portion of profits to projects for rescued animals and vegan living. Laurie is the creator of our Compassion Arts logo, the designer of our website and materials, and a source of infinite creativity, ideas, and good will.