You Are Beautiful

Tonight, through a link at GTMcKnight, I came across You Are Beautiful, a wonderfully positive site that challenges us to look closely at consumerism and offering a polar, positive approach to public spaces.
You Are Beautiful is a simple, powerful statement which is incorporated into the over absorption of mass media and lifestyles that are wrapped in consumer culture.
This statement and the context in which someone finds it gives meaning to its message and purpose to this project.
The intention behind this project is to reach beyond ourselves as individuals to make a difference by creating moments of positive self realization in those who happen across the statement: You Are Beautiful.
Intention is the most important aspect of the You Are Beautiful project in its idea of purity. Graffiti and street art are an act not a style, but stylistically large corporations have been copying and using the ‘urban decay’ look to sell products.
It all comes down to intention. Nothing is sacred. Everything that has a perceived value becomes commodified. Companies hire out teenagers to slap up stickers and posters, and pay their fines when they are caught by the police. This is not street art, but a marketing campaign.
The reasons why street artists are doing what they are doing, in the way that they are doing, is not simply to question their surroundings; but to provide alternative perspectives, meanings, or values to those of consumerism.
Advertising elicits a response to buy, where this project elicits a response to do something. The attempt with You Are Beautiful is to create activism instead of consumerism.
You Are Beautiful uses the medium of advertising and commercialization to spread a positive message.
Projects like these make a difference in the world by catching us in the midst of daily life and creating moments of positive self realization.

The project creates pieces with the words “You Are Beautiful” in various locations and through varied means. My favourite has to be one that placed cups on a fence. The message changed over time because of counter vandalism and retooling of the message, with “You Are Forever,” “You Are A Lover,” and “You Are Loved.”

The other day it seemed people wanted me to be wearing gloves, even though it was a nice day out. At three different places I went that morning I was asked if I had left gloves there. I don’t think my hands looked cold, or are so visually unappealing that they should be covered, so the coincidence must be benign.

It just dawned on me that it’s Christmas Eve. This season is moving by so very quickly. It seems like just yesterday it was my birthday. I’m not sure I’ll be updating tomorrow, so I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas. And Merry Mithramas as well. I’ll drink some egg nog for each of you.

Boxing Day (the day after Christmas, for those of you in parts of the world that don’t have that name in your vocabulary) I will be visiting my parents in Dean. It’s been months since I was last there (see “Given Sight By Stars” and “Time and Motion“), and I’m looking forward to seeing my family agian.

You Are Beautiful.

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