The Jewish Healthcare Foundation was pleased to support a teen art exhibition, hosted by local partners The Second Floor at the JCC, the Friendship Circle of Pittsburgh, the Center of Life, and the 10.27 Healing Partnership. The exhibition, Connected Through Covid: Our Experience, features art that communicates the struggles, fears, anxieties, and even the bright spots teens experienced throughout this unprecedented time brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Connected Through Covid: Our Experience draws inspiration from #HeartsTogether: The Art of Rebuilding, a community beautification project surrounding Tree of Life Or L'Simcha.
During summer 2021, the community organizations gathered with a group of teens and young adults on the rooftop of Friendship Circle for several print media art-making workshops, during which the 10.27 Healing Partnership led the teens in conversation on their experiences of navigating the pandemic and their mental health.
The organizations created the exhibition to showcase the artwork created during these workshops, to celebrate the teens' creativity and to share their perspectives with the broader community. The exhibition also featured films by teen filmmakers, created through a JHF-funded University of Pittsburgh research project, which explored the teens' perspectives on stressors in their daily lives.
The exhibition, hosted at the JCC Robinson Building, opened with a September 12 event and ran through September 30. The opening event included a panel with youth artists Talia Rosenthal and Annie Yonas, moderated by Maggie Feinstein, the director of the 10/27 Healing Partnership. Music artists Shoota Shak and Big Kat, who are teen participants of Center of Life's KRUNK Movement program, performed at the event.
An onsite art-making collaboration, organized by Kiyomi Knox of Center of Life, accompanies the exhibition. During the grand opening, attendees were invited to contribute to the group art piece. Artists Avi Diamond, Savannah Graham, and Yafa Schnadower contributed creative guidance to the exhibition.
The art is digitized in an online gallery here.