“VISIONARY NOT REACTIONARY” An exhibition curated by For Freedoms in partnership with Meridian International Center

Open and Free Gallery Nights

June 8, June 22, July 6 from 6:00 - 8:00 PM ET




Art is the best expression for democracy. It is the sharpest tool we have for transformational love and community, traits that underpin and drive the success of all democratic movements.

It invites us to engage in many perspectives that challenge us to think more deeply and critically about what shapes and drives us, what compels us to action and how we can relate more compassionately to ourselves and others in times of social and political crises.

These artists inspire us to consider the complexity and discomfort of our humanity and at the same time, our capacity to co-exist, collaborate, and imagine beyond what we can see and what we thought was possible. Their work inspires inclusivity in civic engagement, empowering justice and democracy to flourish.


This exhibition will feature some of the world’s leading contemporary artists bringing global attention to building a political and cultural identity around listening, healing, and justice. In it we will honor the powerful work of female Iranian artists fighting for freedom in Iran and American artists whose works address equality and justice issues needing attention to ensure the future of democracy.

  • Nekisha Durrett

  • Eric Gottesman

  • Martha Jackson Jarvis

  • Coby Kennedy

  • Sheida Soleimani

  • Hank Willis Thomas




For Freedoms is an artist collective that centers art and creativity as a catalyst for transformative connection and collective liberation. It is known for installing artist-designed billboards across the United States to get out the vote, as well as its recent partnership with Women, Life Freedom, a coalition of Iranian women leaders and artists fighting for democracy. This consortium has grown to become the largest community for creative civic engagement in the United States. For Freedoms was co-founded in 2016 by Hank Willis Thomas, an American conceptual artist and alum of Washington, DC’s Duke Ellington School of the Arts, who works primarily with themes related to identity, history, and popular culture. Thomas is one of the featured artist for this exhibition and serves as a champion of our cultural programming in the Washington, DC community.