Embark on a transformative journey of artistic expression at the Bold Affirmations Exhibition, proudly hosted in the Tamar Hendel Gallery at CREATE Arts Center from January 20 to February 17. Join us for the Opening Reception on January 20 from 12-2 pm, where the vibrant artwork of Cynthia F. Johnson takes center stage, bringing to life a powerful narrative inspired by bold affirmations and the spirit of positive change. Mark your calendars for an engaging Art Talk on February 7, from 5:30-7 pm, where Cynthia herself will delve into the inspiration behind her creations, inviting you to explore the intersection of art, community, and transformation. Don’t miss the chance to immerse yourself in this captivating exhibition, as each piece encourages us to embrace boldness as a catalyst for unity and love. Witness the beauty of color, courage, and connection at the Bold Affirmations Exhibition—where art meets empowerment.

Artist Statement

“You must be bold, be brave, and courageous and find a way to get in the way” —John Lewis

There is no self-made person—we need nurturing people and supportive institutions to survive and thrive.  I began the Words to Live By series in 2018 because I was disturbed by the coarsening of political discourse.  It seemed that there was way too much anger being displayed by our leaders.   The series became so popular with people who saw the images that I decided to solicit suggestions from them.  I realized that living out these words can create an environment in which we grow into what we are meant to be.  We must be bold in working to create the Beloved Community that so many of our compatriots have spoken about.  The Way of Love is the only answer to life’s challenges because hate will not get us there.  We need to look out for each other and do what we can to care for those who are living on the margins or suffering from loneliness.

As an artist, I am a fan of bold colors.  The brighter, the better as far as I am concerned.  Which got me to thinking about our behavior toward each other.  Too often, we think of bold behavior as being aggressive. It has a negative connotation in many cases. But what if we looked at it from another vantage point?  What if we defined bold behavior as taking a chance and exploring communities we have never visited?  What if it meant going out of our way to get to know people with whom we have never spent time?  If we want to transform our world into a more loving place, these are important first steps.

We must NOT give in to anxiety because it will cloud our thinking; fear shrinks the mind.  Find the people who are doing good and walk with them.  We cannot afford to be complacent. While we may not be able to solve every problem that we are confronting, we must try our best to move the needle.  We must keep calm, stay curious, continue to educate ourselves, and build networks for good in our respective communities.  We must be bold.- Cynthia F. Johnson