On November 12th, West End House members and artists—high school senior Kalista and high school sophomore Tyler—were invited to present their art at the Youth Arts for Social Change Conference at the Boston Public Library in Dudley. The conference welcomed artists from all over Boston to explore the intersection of art, social advocacy, and community impact. Kalista and Tyler represent two of only seven artists city-wide who received this honor.
Kalista presented four pieces in a portfolio entitled “Defining Kalista,” which expressed different aspects of her personal identity. Kalista reflected on the impact of her art: “Even though I am going through some obstacles, I can still stand here and show how I feel.”
Tyler performed a spoken word piece entitled, “What You See is Not What You Get,” in which he reflects on his personal experience with perseverance, overcoming hardship, and the power of learning from mistakes.
In addition to individual presentations by artists, youth participated in workshops facilitated by company partners, including Through the Lens of Resistance: Media and Representation by The Urbano Project, which highlighted the role of media in maintaining the status quo for those in power, and The Power of Advocacy by the Boch Center, which explored tools that facilitate self-advocacy.