How to Remain Optimistic during a Pandemic

The other day I heard a story about a theater major whose counselor told him to switch to Plan B because acting wasn't a "thing" anymore. I have heard similar sentiments from young visual artists and musicians, too. This makes me very sad. Remaining optimistic about the future is a very important aspect of weathering this crisis and continuing on the path to having a creative life.

Did you know...From 1347 to the late 17th century, Europe was stalked by the Black Death, yet art not only survived, it flourished. Even in the face of so much loss of life, and a pandemic that just wouldn't go away, European art rose to glory. The people of this time period learned to live with it and art endured. From this perspective, we realize that the Old Masters lived there lives in the context of pandemic. Michelangelo, Rembrandt, and for any actors out there, even Shakespeare all faced the danger that a mortal contagion could at any moment seize their city. Despite this, artists of the 1500s and 1600s created incredible works of art that inspire hope. Far from being driven to despair, these artists were spurred to assert the glory of life. Keep the Faith! Keep doing whatever you can to make art during this unparalleled time.

Francesco Francia. "San Roch (Saint Rocco)." 1502. Tempera on Wood. Protector of plague victims. The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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