"When I do public art, I am NOT a performance artist. My art practice in the public realm invokes a transcendental transference of human energy in the present moment through creative contact. It is not intended to entertain, it is intended to engage. When I do public art I am an activating artist. "
-Bed Hermin, 2018
"Arm Us With Art" artistically documents the culmination of a month-long exploration of the effects of gun violence in the United States as seen by artist Bed Hermin. Using a multi-modal approach, Bed has once more taken her art work out of the studio, after finding that a traditional studio practice did not accurately encompass the range of emotions she felt, nor did it allow her to connect with others on the issue. Once freed from the confines of the studio, she was able to embody her emotions in a hostile snow environment. Donning the costume of an alternate part of her self and using movement, sound, and visual arts, Bed created a sculptural representation of innocent lives (represented by the surrender-white coat) who were murdered. In the second portion of the video, Bed transitions out of the costume and into her primary Self. In the third portion she shares the coat on a message board and invites people who were on the Boston Common at the March 24th March for Our Lives to add to the piece. The film includes music by Tom Hamill from his album "Cosmic Consciousness," and is an aural reminder that all this is happening within the universe as a whole and there is at once a beyond that is happening at the present moment. The inclusion of various parts of a speech by Alessandra Seiter brings us back to earth with various facts about gun violence in the USA that grounds us in this specific reality. As a whole Bed Hermin's documentation of the birth of a public work can be seen as an artwork itself, though the art is found radically in the transfer of energy from one person to another through creative, imaginative, and expressive means.
It is Bed Hermin's belief that it is not her place to be yelling at those who oppose the ways of love, compassion, equanimity and who propagate systems of oppression. Those types of battles are best fought by others, yet the anger is still very much alive and in order to get it out, Bed will harness that energy into visual works in her studio. This type of recording is evidence of one of the ways in which she is able to later keep her composure and listen with an open ear to all opposing sides, for she finds minds are most easily changed when they feel safe and loved.
ALL OR NOTHING