Diversity Teams Work Better

By: William Scott Jackson

Hatfield, United Kingdom

Artist Statement

In theory, organizations must treat everyone equally when recruiting; but it is still the case that hidden, sometimes even unconscious, stereotypes heavily influence who we hire. This tends to make organizations and teams homogenous — and lacking the huge benefits of diverse perspectives.

Diversity Fingerprint

By: Sergio Naranjo Segura

Benicarlo, Spain

Artist Statement

Recent research on DNA reveals that human beings have an extremely varied genetic inheritance; even in some very isolated populations, the genetic variation is remarkable. A person from Haiti can have DNA that is shared with people from France, Tunisia, Poland, Vietnam and Argentina. This insight led me to think that each one of us carries a good part of the world’s genetic diversity. In this way, our fingerprint, which identifies us as unique individuals, could be visualized as a symbol of this diversity.

City in the Village

By: Ismail Odetoia

Lagos, Nigeria

Artist Statement

In most rural places, being young or a woman usually puts you at a disadvantage in terms of education and economic opportunities. Rural youth face these specific challenges. They are often under-employed or employed in low productivity sectors. This portrait imagines how technology and education can penetrate and improve the world’s most forgotten places. It’s a vision of a world where human capital is complemented and most people from rural areas won’t need to migrate to the city in search of a better life.

Sezer’s Diary

By: Leyla Emektar

Erdek, Turkey

Artist Statement

The boy in the photograph is my student; his name is Sezer. Sezer was born in 2012 with spina bifida. He has had six operations in eight years. With the help of his parents, he can maintain many of his basic living activities, but Sezer is a smart, hardworking and determined child. He wants to play basketball in the Paralympics when he grows up. I hope he achieves everything he wants in his life and is very happy.

Treasures of Time

By: Aysha Shaikh

Smethwick, United Kingdom

Artist Statement

My art symbolizes the elderly in our society and reflects the inevitable stage in a human’s life cycle. The contrast in color (the people are black and white, while the jewelry is in color) expresses the idea that objects outlive the people who wear and use them. Each individual’s most prized possession is featured expressing the beauty of individuality. The woman in this piece is my grandmother. The map behind her shows her travels and her Pakistani sari shows her origins in contrast to the man’s clothing, which is an expression of western culture. Their weathered skin and rough wrinkles link with the map’s background revealing the treks these individuals embarked on during their youth. These two individuals represent the community of elderly people who often fear what the future may bring for them.

Journey to Self Love

By: Ella M.

Sarasota, Florida

Artist Statement

The phrase “I love myself” is one coated with terror and discomfort. In a society that profits off people (especially women) by picking apart all of their insecurities, engaging in acts of self-acceptance is an unspeakable rebellion. It shouldn’t be! We must wholeheartedly embrace ourselves before being able to unconditionally love all others. We must embrace our own differences, first and foremost. The journey begins there!

We Have Different Opportunities but We Have Equal Rights

By: Artur Bolzhurov

Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

Artist Statement

The boy in this picture is my own and he is disabled. Some years ago he played drums in a musical group that consists of disabled children. They performed at concerts, festivals and received many prizes. Every disabled child has hopes, dreams, desires and feelings. Every disabled child has abilities, either explicit or hidden. Every disabled child is able to love and they want to be loved and to be understood and supported.

Helping Hand

By: Clayton Southard

Lawrence, Kansas

Artist Statement

I wanted to portray an unlikely hero helping an older individual cross a city street. The piece is made up of individual assets that were sketched, inked and scanned digitally to be placed and colored together.

The Time is Now

By: Natalie B.

Southport, North Carolina

Artist Statement

Shirley Chisholm shattered a glass ceiling as the first African-American woman elected to Congress. She fought tirelessly for the Equal Rights Amendment, which guarantees equal rights to all Americans regardless of their gender. To me, Shirley Chisholm embodies diversity and inclusion because she gave a voice to many Americans whose needs went unheard by our government because of their race or sex. In my painting, I portrayed Shirley as a colorful beacon of hope whose legacy will be passed down for generations to come.

Sick

By: Anna W.

Sarasota, Florida

Artist Statement

An invisible illness is a disability that isn’t immediately apparent. These include such chronic illnesses as diabetes, sleep disorders, chronic pain, and visual and auditory impairments. Through my piece, I wanted to communicate the mental stress that having an invisible illness can put on someone, due to the many ignorant responses that they receive. I’ve lived my whole life with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (an invisible chronic pain disorder) and have been told, “It’s all in your head!” or “You’re lucky! I wish I had a handicapped parking tag,” more times than I can count. Because I look “normal,” I get mean looks when I step out of my car, park in a handicapped spot, or stand up from my wheelchair. Although it may take time, I believe that we need to educate ourselves about invisible illnesses and come together to support those that may be affected in our community and around the world.