Usually when I make a piece of art, the title is the least of my concerns. Not so this time. When I was self-educating on black history I came across a talk by a director of the Southern Poverty Law Center who spoke about hate groups in America. Of course I had to follow that lead, only to learn to my shock and amazement that as of 2019, there were over 940 hate groups within the United States. I found that an unbelievable statistic so I explored further. What I found out was that there is not just one anti LGBTQ group in the US but 49; there is not just one anti-Muslim groups but 100 and so on. Nine hundred and forty hate groups in the US, and that was in 2019. How many more are there now?
This lead me to reading about hate groups, and how hate is a learned behavior. No one is born a hater. They have to be taught to hate. Which lead me to thinking, why could these folks not be taught to love instead, which led to designing this work.
I had Spoonflower print the numbers/names of the hate groups on white cotton. I then designed a collage of love words, from love songs and poetry; both things I recalled or collected over the years. I screen-printed those in white paint over the hate group background, which kind of distorted it, and what I was hoping to achieve. I also screen-printed the same words in red on a vintage French tablecloth. I cut that randomly to create a mosaic effect of a heart partially covering the hate group background. Perfect! I achieved exactly what I wanted…that is until I got to the title.
At one point the label had one title, it went to the photographer with another title, my website had a 3rd title! Right now, they all say “Choose Love Over Hate.” I think that is actually quite adequate as really, is it not a choice whether to love or hate?
Initially, it was ‘Love is The Answer’. Then it was ‘Only Love Conquers Hate’ and then ‘Choose Love Over Hate.’ It seems important to me to include the words both love and hate; otherwise will the message may not be apparent. Maybe so? The jury is out! Your thoughts?
Judith D Block says
I was shocked at the number of hate groups you listed! What the hell is wrong with people?
I like your title but I would present mine, “it’s a choice ”
Thank you Judith…the same to you! I like that..”it’s a choice” which definitely could be used with one of the two that does not already say ‘choose.’
Helen Johnston says
Martha Ginn says
First of all, how painful it must have been to make yourself read about these hate groups. Your piece is powerful, and as I looked at it I kept hearing “Cover Hate With Love” or “Love Covers Hate.” I agree that using both the words “love” and “hate” is helpful in the understanding of the message.
thank you Martha! yes, it was difficult to read about the hate groups, and especially the number of them. disturbing indeed.
Dolores Miller says
How about simply “Love Over Hate”? A succinct description that draws the viewer into the piece to discover the meaning without being directive…
this is also good; especially as the visual is love over hate! Thanks Dolores!
Pat Bishop says
I prefer your title, you are asking the viewer to decide for themselves rather than dictating. People don’t like being told what to do.
haha…love this comment Pat. I sure hate being told what to do!!!
Dianne Koppisch Hricko says
I like really short titles. So mine would be Choose Love. I wish you well, and have enjoyed tagging along.
thanks Dianne…great suggestion!
Franki Kohler says
You are right, it’s a choice. I like Choose Love. Short and sweet and your piece illustrates the fuller sentiment of “Choose love over hate.” perfectly. Carry on!
thank you Franki…this is helpful indeed!