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Art For Amnesty Wants To Get Miami Talking About Refugees

Art and social justice. For centuries artists have been combining the two and a show opening Friday in Miami once again hopes to harness this form of human creativity to get people to talk about human rights.

One piece at the show at Art Bastion Gallery in Wynwood features two panels full of rubber duckies: one yellow, the other blue. But, there’s an exception. One duckie from each color have been switched.

Credit Wilson Sayre / WLRN

  And those two duckies “stick out like a sore thumb,” says Courtney Levine, a volunteer with Amnesty International.

She coordinated this Art for Amnesty event, which operates under the larger Amnesty International banner.

Levin says this work “Duckling Displacement” by Miami artist Dayana Ruiz reflects the theme of the event: refugees and migrant rights.

“I think there hasn’t been that much community level discussion about refugee population movement here in Miami, how it affects us locally,” says Levine, “and I’d love to see that start.”

That’s the point of the show -- to get people involved with Amnesty International or any other organization trying to grapple with issues of human rights.

She believes art is a vehicle to get people there.

Credit Wilson Sayre / WLRN
"People on the Move" is the first volunteer-led show for Art for Amnesty.

  “[Art] leads to sort of an emotional vestibule for understanding these otherwise possibly academic concepts,” said Levine.

This is the first volunteer-led show for Art for Amnesty, which holds events all over the world.

You can find more about the exhibition at Art Bastion here.