IMAGINE NO VIOLENCE
We are so excited about this year's Imagine No Violence art contest. We are always so impressed with the creativity and thoughtfulness that goes into your artwork for this program. This year's theme will be announced soon.
Last year our theme was Imagine safety for all: Every human being has the right to be free from the fear of violence. Exposure to violence creates fear and makes a person feel unsafe. When people feel safe they are able to grow, learn, heal, and create brighter futures for themselves and those around them. Artwork focused on what a safe community looked like to the artists and how we could all create feelings of safety for ourselves and for those around us--in our homes, schools, and communities.
The Imagine No Violence campaign was launched with an event held at Bass Hall in November 2001. More than 1,200 high school students gathered at the event, with delegations from each Fort Worth ISD high school reporting on their concepts of "Imagining No Violence". In several follow-up meetings, students developed the idea of promoting nonviolence through the creation of original artwork--thus the Imagine No Violence art contest was born.
Each school year more than 45,000 Tarrant County area students participate in the contest. Imagine No Violence artwork has reached millions of people through multi-media campaigns promoting nonviolence and offering practical ways for citizens to prevent crime and violence.
WHY IMAGINE NO VIOLENCE
The great Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes developed a vision of free speech as a "marketplace of ideas." According to his theory, while the First Amendment guarantees free speech, even protecting the right to convey destructive expressions, we needn't worry because the truth and value of each expression will always be determined in the "marketplace" of rival ideas.
Unfortunately, nearly a century after Justice Holmes developed his theory, the "marketplace" is inundated with ideas and images that effectively promote violence, particularly to our children and youth. We know that for some of our most vulnerable children, living in our poorest neighborhoods, gangs and violence are an ever-present reality. For these children especially, the relentless glorification of gangs and violence in the movies television shows they watch, the video games they play, the music they listen to, and the Internet sites they visit can have disastrous consequences.
The first step in winning the battle for the hearts and minds of our children and youth is to ensure there are sufficient ideas in the "marketplace" to compete with those that spread violence and hate. That's what Imagine No Violence is all about.
Hundreds of thousands of students have produced artwork promoting a more peaceful community. Participants have represented every race, socioeconomic background and achievement level. Our student artists have employed every implement from pencils to pastels, incorporating themes from the simple to the complex. Our hope and belief is that every Imagine No Violence piece is the result of thoughtful contemplation on the part of the artist.
The influence of ideas produced by our student artists has extended far beyond the participants' own minds. It is our wish that the outstanding artwork contained on this site inspires you to do your part by contributing your own thoughts to the "marketplace of ideas". Help us spread the word that we are committed to building the safest communities in America, Let us not only imagine no violence, let us make it a reality.