Mind the Heart! Project An introduction
A worldwide art project that deals with social awareness. Over the past decade,
the project has reached more than 100 cities across 5 continents: from New York to Bangkok, Sydney to London,
from the Israel Museum and the National Cathedral in D.C. to orphanages in Kenya and Uganda.
Back in 2009, searching for ways to facilitate a direct connection to their city and its inhabitants,
Israeli artists Maya Gelfman & Roie Avidan stepped out of the galleries and museums - to the streets.
The mission: to get the artists and the passers-by to be fully present, to ‘be here now’.
This is achieved through minimalist street art, temporary nature installations and rituals, public interactions and lectures.
The works are made with tangible materials (yarn, felt, duct-tape, found-objects) that clash with the concrete jungle or natural surroundings.
They deal with the power of choice, the cyclical nature of things, acknowledging wounds in order to heal, and interconnectedness.
Nowadays, by utilizing performative practices – social, artistic, philosophical and physical –
the project creates works that are informed by the present moment. The art is always context driven,
reflecting not just the artists’ point of view but also the direct influence of the place, time and people there.
In July 2017 Gelfman & Avidan took this approach to the next level with the Serendipity Experiment,
committing to a 24/7/365 performance in public across the U.S.A. They gave away all their possessions, home and studios,
traveled to a new land and then let strangers dictate their route, schedule and daily experiences,
all the while committed to creating daily site-and-time-specific works. The works reflect the ways in which people, objects, cities
and nature interact with one another at a specific place and point in time.
Serendipity has proven to be an incredible force. Over the past two years it has led the project to 43 states,
working and speaking in hundreds of spaces, creating 8 solo exhibitions and partnering with cities and communities in a myriad of ways.
Recent partners include: The Smithsonian D.C., City of Houston TX, Rice University TX, Atlanta Center for Civic Innovation GA,
Hillary Clinton Children's Library in Little Rock AR, Creative Discovery Museum TN, City of Portsmouth NH, City of Decatur GA, Building 98 in Marfa TX.
The project has been featured in dozens of media outlets around the globe – print, online, television and radio –
as well as in three art books in Germany, France & Colombia.