Artist's Statement

Andrea Tosi, Repeace founder

Repeace is a conceptual design idea, a creative solution, from inspiration to execution. That's why you find an artist's statement here.

I am a creative. Some artists build collections of photographs, paintings, and sculptures. I am a graduated graphic artist with an MA in social psychology. I design solutions of social empowerment, because this is how I'm wired.  

I believe I have a lot to contribute to social change, to what you all refer to as “activism.” Human beings have a natural tendency to participate, to solve problems, to relieve what they perceive as conflicts, in science, or in society at large. People who show empathy, do that naturally.

I have no presumption that the way I see the world is correct. It just happen to be the way I see the world. It has come to this point from education, my experience in different countries, and it was fueled by a passion to make a difference. I am not compelled by any need to have you to agree with me. The best I can do is share this background, what I have come to believe, and what I think it takes to fix social change, to make social participation rewarding, cohesive, efficient.

When I lived in San Francisco, in my 30s, I felt compelled to participate in civic life, in my own community as well as abroad. I got drawn into the culture of social change. Commonly referred as “Activism,” in the U.S., it’s a way of life... as popular as the proverbial apple pie.

If I invest time in social change and participate in civic discourse, I want to feel empowered and I have to see results. I think that I’m speaking for the most of you, if I say that we all wish to move towards progress, on the base of some universally shared values.

After a few years of activism, I ended up being swamped with emails from hundreds of organizations. I found myself spending way more time than I wanted, sharing petitions, raising awareness, liking, sharing and reposting important content on social media. It ended nowhere near consensus.

I felt like I was only good enough to give money to political candidates or dozens of causes. My personal information was shared and sold to some of the growing number of 2.5 Million organizations, targeting us as potential donors, and telling us to “resist.”

Social media communities want us to like them, to share their original content. Youtube channels and social entities want us to subscribe to them, to give them echo. It’s a really brutal popularity contest, a competition that is anything but constructive, and far from creating a true sense of unity and solidarity.

The traditional methods of non violent resistance, of raising objection against injustices (protests, petitions, organizing, whistleblowing, picketing, sit-in, occupying) are obsolete. They are redundant, disorganized, ignored by governments and corrupted media, not to mention extremely dangerous.

For the most part, they are futile. If you tell me that the Civil Rights Movement brought us equality, explain me this, or this. If you tell me that antiwar efforts work, explain me this. If 30 years of raising and sharing awareness about Climate Change leaves us with a lament for the dead, is this success? If, in essence, the whole establishment is now able, more than ever before, of being a complete disaster, what is this telling about our community of activism? Is this "resistance"? What is the team of the 99% doing other than taking one hit after another?

The establishment has been using MSM to frame negatively activism/dissent for such a long time.

Activism already carries a stigma. You’re being criticized for always being “against something,” for being out of touch with the main stream, for being radical, or subversive.

Could there be smarter, more efficient ways to resist and change what’s inefficient? The conditions to build a cohesive movement of movements simply aren’t given. So, should we create them, or find them? Is it possible that we overlooked something, that we misinterpreted something we assumed as a truth?

Our task, says German Professor Rainer Mausfeld, should be to better understand the enemy, and better understand ourselves.

But the “enemy,” is not some evil, powerful group, conjuring to oppress us more and exploit the gentle and the weak. Todays injustices and social inequalities are barely different than they were in any empire in the past? The "1%" has always done what it does best, rule, manipulate, deceit, divide and conquer. The enemy is not inside a selfish, self serving ideology imposed on the weak by the rich and the powerful. The enemy is inside human nature, incapable to resist and react as a team, and fix problems like colonies of ants, or bee hives... as real collectives.

The enemy is our conflicted nature, our individuality, that in these extreme times of crisis drives us even more apart, rather than closer. It’s amazing to see how many wish to solve our biggest problems, how many try to build their own “Save the world-ideas,” but now it would be time to understand what is the invisible glue that holds us together, what is the single thought, the linguistic trigger, able to unleash a global revolution of consciousness.

I didn’t have to create the solution. I just had to understand it. I "found it". There can be a better way to confront what’s wrong, and frame our grievances in a way that they won’t be ignored... by making responsibility irresistible. Can you take all the things you're against and flip them into the 3 commitments on the front page?

Peace is the absence of wars. Peace is the absence of fear.
Imagine Peace. Imagine Responsibility.

Andrea Tosi
Founder of Repeace.


(images of Occupy WS and other nations found on Facebook pages. Authors unknown)