The Power of Art

art workshops Tuscany
Prof. Yves M. Larocque and the Honourable Michaëlle Jean

The transformative power of art…

At the end of September, a fantastic national forum entitled  “Power of the Arts: Advancing Social Change” took place in Ottawa, Canada. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend because during those dates I was in Italy leading one of our painting workshops. The forum organised by the Michaëlle Jean Foundation and Carleton University, promoted arts as a powerful tool to transform, improve and unify our societies, an idea advocated by Walk the Arts since its creation in 1997. It is with this philosophy of promoting the transformative power of art that we conduct our painting workshops.

I am here quoting from the programme: “Art has a force of attraction that can unite hearts and minds around an idea, an experience, an emotion, a field of action, and a unique way of seeing the world. Art, in all its manifestations, has a tremendous unifying power in our communities for it is with great imagination that lasting solutions are born to meet some of our society’s most enduring challenges.” Certainly well said Mme Jean. However and as we mentioned on our last post about Utopian Art,  the arts need political support to crystallize its potential of producing radical changes in our society. See link:

The forum was the results of many years of consulting the Canadian community, a consultation of which I was part, as show this photograph of me and Mme Jean, then the Governor General of Canada. The philosopher and film maker Jean-Daniel Lafond and Prof. John Osborne were the brainchild of this symposium. For more information, you can click on

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