World Health Organization (WHO) x Create2030 Launch COVID-19 Arts Festival

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The festival includes the launch of a virtual art gallery, a meet and greet with the artists and a series of webinar events focused on art and COVID-19.

WHO x Create2030 COVID-19 Arts Festival Flier
WHO x Create2030 COVID-19 Arts Festival Flier

NEW YORK, NY, USA, July 26, 2020 / — Contact: [email protected]

Create2030 in partnership with the World Health Organization is launching an online COVID-19 Arts Festival taking place 26-31 July 2020.

Co-curated by Christopher Bailey (Lead, Arts and Health, World Health Organization) and Lisa Russell (Emmy-award winning filmmaker and Founder, Create2030), the festival is a culmination of COVID-19 related artwork from a growing community of artists from around the world who are using their talents to dispel myths, educate and create a narrative of this unique time in history.

The festival includes the launch of a virtual art gallery, a meet and greet with the artists, and a series of webinar events focused on art and COVID-19. The festival will encourage attendees to support artists through licensing or purchasing of current artwork or contracting artists for future work.

Invited speakers range from UN development specialists to arts therapists/educators to professional artists including Victor Orozco (Senior Economist, World Bank), Nisha Sajnani, (Associate Professor & Director, Drama Therapy and the Theatre & Health Lab, NYU), Ashara Ekundayo, (Founder, Artist as First Responder), Ayandi McKayi (Actor, MTV Shuga), mental health experts and artists and others to ensure a comprehensive discussion about the role of arts during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2019, the World Health Organization released a report “What is the evidence on the role of the arts in improving health and well-being?” that showed that arts are instrumental in the “prevention of ill health, promotion of health, and management and treatment of illness across the lifespan.”

“Artists are often among the first to respond to a collective crisis, helping communicate life-saving messages, providing comfort, building solidarity, and helping us make emotional sense of a chaotic and anxious time,” states Bailey.

“The pandemic has taken an incredibly hard toll on the creative economy and we are thankful to work with the World Health Organization to find innovative ways to highlight the important contributions artists make in times of global health crises as well as ideate ways to support them,” states Russell.

26 July 2020: Virtual Art Gallery Opening + Meet and Greet with Artists
27 July 2020: Mental health, art and COVID-19
28 July 2020: Youth poetry and COVID-19
29 July 2020: Hip hop and COVID-19
30 July 2020: Arts, policy and COVID-19
31 July 2020: Looking forward: Pivoting art online.

*All webinars take place at 12pm EST.

More information at

*** WHO and Create2030 representatives are available for interviews.***

About World Health Organization
The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations responsible for international public health. The WHO Constitution, which establishes the agency’s governing structure and principles, states its main objective as “the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health.

About Create2030
Create2030 is an international network of professional artists who are committed to using their talents in support of the UN-led 17 Sustainable Development Goals through live performances and arts curation, creative workshops and facilitating partnerships between creative professionals and UN/NGO agencies.


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