Just as New York City went on coronavirus lockdown, The Art Students League posted a rally cry online in the form of #ArtApart. This social media campaign (via Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter) presented a list of seven daily drawing prompts—UNSHAKEN, PASSION, MUSE, MASK, HEAL, ISOLATED, and UNITED—to encourage the artistic community to draw every day even while quarantined. This was inspired by the League’s motto, “No Day Without A Line.”
With almost 400 posts on Instagram at the time of this writing, the community has proven that social distancing hasn’t kept artists from creating art. Here are some highlights from the week-long event, including artwork from League students, monitors and even instructors Sherry Camhy, Greg Follender and Jerry Weiss. This first image is a self-portrait shared by League alumna, instructor, and artist Yuka Imata (@yuka_imata). She initially moved to NYC from her native Japan in September of 2001:
“I just moved…[and] started studying at the Art Students League. In the middle of uncertainty, I was told to come home by my family, but I didn’t. I stayed and continued studying. I knew if I went back to Japan, it wouldn’t be easy to come back…Here I am still standing, unshaken, practicing art here in New York. We can all get through this. New Yorkers/Artists are strong 💪”
It is an uncertain time for everyone due to the current pandemic, but #ArtApart has shown that even though the League building is temporarily closed, the spirit of the League lives on.