[Year in Review 2020] 30 inspiring quotes on the power of art in the pandemic era

In this compilation, we present 30 quotes from artists and curators on art as inspiration, solace, and resistance during the COVID-19 crisis.
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Launched in 2014, StoryBites is a regular feature from YourStory, showcasing notable quotable quotes from our articles (see the previous post here). Share these gems and insights with your colleagues and networks, and check back to the original articles for more insights.

The coronavirus pandemic has adversely affected art festivals, exhibitions, galleries and museums. Many gallerists, festival organisers, and artists have risen to the occasion, however, and regrouped with online exhibitions, virtual festivals, and ecommerce sites.

The quotes and photos in this compilation are drawn from articles in our weekend PhotoSparks section on art and design. See also our compilations from World Art Day, World Heritage Day, World Photography Day, and Top Quotes of 2019 on Art.

These quotes reflect the power of art to capture the mood of the moment, bring solace, connect people across boundaries, leverage technology innovation, and even mobilise people to adopt healthy practices.

YourStory wishes the artistic community a Happy New Year ahead, with much creativity, success, and impact during these hard times and beyond!

History has shown that the best of creations have come out during crises, including earlier pandemics. - Shyamala Ramanand

Hard times are only the other side of good times. Hard times extract the best out of us. - Chetana Ravi

Art can spread a message of hope, struggle, and victory over an unknown unpredictable enemy such as COVID-19. - Ajnabh Kiev

Art can also act as a way of expressing ourselves and staying socially connected though we are keeping physical distance. - Tiby Manu

A lot of artworks have been made to create awareness about social distancing and the necessity to wear a facial mask. - Priya Ramanathan

Adversity can be changed into opportunity. Embrace change and keep an open mind when it comes to learning. - Vanaja Bal

The pandemic is an opportune moment in human history to refocus our efforts to revitalise nature and allow it to bloom in all its glory. - Shana Gokul

The pandemic has given everyone the opportunity to slow down their lives and take a moment for themselves. - Viva Motwani

The pandemic has put a brake to the breathless situation of contemporary lifestyle. - Anil Kumar

With many people homebound during the pandemic, art can bring about joy and positivity. It can transfer you to a different world. - Nivedita Gouda

Many people who earlier said they didn't have it in them to create art are beginning to explore their creative side without inhibitions during the pandemic. - Shobha Shanbhag

During the pandemic, art appreciation and creation helps us relax physically and mentally, and strengthens our focus with critical thinking. - Mallamma Patil

Health is the most precious asset we can ever have. During these difficult times of pandemic, humour proves to be one of the best medicines to boost our immunity and mental wellbeing. - Nanjunda Swamy

Working on an art project can relieve stress, strengthen critical thinking skills, and improve and sustain memory. Art a day, keeps the doctor away. - Ritu Chawla Mathur

When creative minds are behind locked doors, our souls expand to express more through art. - Shobha Iyer

Art is a soothing balm that helps divert the mind to the pleasanter aspects of life, and creates a calm and happy frame that can boost immunity. - Malini Menon

This crisis helped to retrospect and check on what was really worthwhile. - Rosh Ravindran

Art in different times has always brought people together, especially in tough situations. So art plays a very important role in this era of coronavirus. - Sunita Pavan

Art can increase awareness about preventing the coronavirus outbreak. It also helps express love, affection, and faith across society. - Nagaraju P

In troubled times like what we are going through today, art can be a source of solace and inspiration to all. Both the creation of art and consumption of art makes us feel happy and fulfilled. - Sanjana Shah

As the coronavirus forces us to endure an unprecedented time of distant social contact, somehow art can remind us and assure us of our interconnectedness. This has helped many artists to stay afloat. - Shyamala Ramanand

Art is more than a livelihood. Artists need to speak up their mind and help tackle the crisis. - Anagha Deshpande

Aspiring artists can use this crisis time to build values like patience, tolerance, and mental strength to stay afloat. - Pramila Das

The arts and society share a symbiotic relationship. Just as society needs art to add meaning to life, the arts need the support of society in difficult times. - Manasi Prasad

Now more than ever before, it is imperative for practitioners and professionals in the art world – be it artists, curators, or gallery managers – to remain clued into the latest innovations on the technological front. – Nupur Dalmia

Artists are no longer sitting back and waiting for the ‘gallery moment. - MG Doddamani

While physical distancing has become paramount, online media are drawing the world closer, and helping us reach inside homes. - Ritu Chawla Mathur

Art is a path to self-discovery. Digital or otherwise, hard work and continuously experimenting and pushing the boundaries will define one’s signature style and form. - Vedha Sreeram

We must learn, we have to live with technology. We have to use it for good purposes and go further in this time of crisis, - Rosh Ravindran

Many galleries and artists have becomes tech-savvy. They are having virtual shows, and relying on ecommerce and social media for connecting with buyers to get good sales. – Sangeeta Juneja

The Internet has become the source of all things. Therefore, it will be essential for artists to evolve to make art interesting enough to add allure for younger generations. - Nivedita Gowda

There’s an overall acceptance that the world we live in now demands both the digital and the tangible, the virtual and the physical reality. - MG Doddamani

YourStory has also published the pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups’ as a creative and motivational guide for innovators (downloadable as apps here: Apple, Android).

Edited by Megha Reddy