Art: the ultimate disinfectant in times of COVID-19
These past two years in human history are going to be both definitive and poignant; with a pandemic that brought the entire world to a halt and stretched our health infrastructure to the last mile. All institutions of human interaction like schools, colleges and offices came to a sudden stop, roads and shopping centers were deserted and trend lines for economies around the globe refused to point upwards.
However the virus couldn’t confine artistry, for art is a forever blooming phenomenon; an expression of the human mind that exceeds language, culture and geographies unrestricted. Art is powerfully unifying. The pandemic has definitely been grim but our artists have metamorphosed this bleakness into a myriad of colors which in the least, gives us respite from dullness. Just as Pest Watch India professionals disinfected numerous colonies, government buildings and COVID-affected homes risking their lives on a daily basis, artists showed tremendous resilience through their work to lift our sprits and enable us to keep fighting. Art has been the perfect disinfectant for our souls and artists, the perfect disinfection experts.
Salute to the warriors
If 2020 has taught us one thing, it is the worth of thankfulness and gratitude. Some brave hearts have been at the front line – in hazmat suits, away from their families – in the battle against Covid-19. World’s White Angels –doctors and nurses, are our true saviours. Artists poured their thankfulness through street arts, and on canvases. Here is an art work that just enlivens the soul with life and optimism.
Banksy in this canvas work rejects the fictional heroes and empowers the universal truth. Haven’t social workers always been the real heroes? Thanks to 2020, we are immortalizing this great piece of art.
FAKE, SuperNurse! @iamfake/instagram
Here is a street art example, ‘Super Nurse!’ painted by FAKE in Amsterdam as a token of gratitude to the Covid-19 warriors – depicting nurses as a symbol of bravery, strength and power with the Superman Logo.
Touch of humour
Artists intermingled the past with present to bring out humorous stances in the otherwise gloom-stricken world. In this version of the 1859 painting, ‘The Kiss’, one could see masks and sanitizers. Tvboy visualizes 1850s’ love in the era of a Pandemic.
Lionel Stanhope, Supper at Emmaus, London.
In this comical take, artist Lionel Stanhope reinterpreted the 1601 painting of a resurrected Jesus by two disciples. Lord Jesus’ hands are adorned in surgical gloves conveying to us a sense of reality and the new normal which reigns supreme now.
Love is all you need
The painting by Cheryl L. Zemke and the Mural by Ponywave shared below seem to be singing the same song – that of love. Covid-19 posed a threat to physical intimate interactions. The faces are adorned with masks, an impediment for the lovers, yet, they give us hope, a hope that love can surpass these times too. The open eyes of the lady in the mural are searching for acknowledgement of the situation, in a way asking us to prioritize safety as well.
Just like love, art promises to outshine the Pandemic and so does the indomitable human spirit. Artists beautifully laid bare the most critical elements that will get us though these distressed times – love, gratitude, touch, thankfulness, family, friends, and above all safety! The hues and the tints were splashed in the right amount assuring us that the world isn’t over yet!
Don’t you think then that disinfection treatment in the expert care of professionals help us appreciate the little things in life more and bring us closer to our loved ones, just like a piece of art? A big salute to the timeless disinfectant, art!
Aliya is an English Honors student at St. Stephen's College, Delhi Unviersity. Aliya is an avid reader and a cinophile. She has a special liking for Zombie apocalypse movies and K-pop. She also likes to paint in her free time.