Pareti in the news | Our thank you to healthcare heroes!

April 2020, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, by Kathy Kyle

As Pareti faced shutdowns with the rest of the country, we felt we needed to do something. At the beginning of Covid healthcare workers were couragously continuing to work, so Pareti made a call to artists to ask them to help create art to say “thank you” to our healthcare heroes.

We asked for news coverage to help inspire other artists to do the same. As artists, we saw firsthand just how powerful art can be.

Patients, healthcare workers, security guards at the hospital, friends or relatives of patients, and even well-meaning people who saw us on the news stopped by to tell us how much our chalk drawings meant to them. News and radio stations carried our story.

What was remarkable and humbling was that this parking area was enormous, and our drawings were comparitively small – yet they struck a chord with the Covid floor, as well as other floors as patients and healthcare staff looked down at the progress below.

Check out the videos by clicking on the photos.

Art has impact

As artists, many of us have discussed the possibility that posthumously our art may mean something to others – if we’re lucky (and if we don’t use house paint for paintings!). Few of us realize the impact our art has NOW on those who most need to be inspired, uplifted, reminded, and thanked.

Chalk drawings are temporary – which is what I love about them. They’re like a bouquet of flowers. While this temporary medium lasted only a few days, the impact of art is lasting. As an artist I merely wanted to say thanks, and inspire other artists to do the same. I had no idea a drawing – something I and other artists love to do – could steele others to face really frightening situations. One Covid patient credited the progress of these drawings to keep him going. Many nurses visited us as they left their shift to say they kept checking on the progress of our drawings to keep their focus on that, rather than on their fear of catching covid.

So this post is a reminder to create with abandon because creating art may be your most meaningful work, no matter what your day job is. Your work may be avant gauche, avant garde or kitcsh, but if it touches another human being you’ve done your job.