It is always a process when dealing with the bullying and abuse when someone is attacked (both physically and mentally) because of their sexuality. And one artist has found a therapeutic way to overcome adversity in a profoundly moving way, by placing something beautiful in the places where violent acts have taken place. Here’s more:
Paul Harfleet began The Pansy Project to mark his encounters with homophobia in Manchester, UK. The artist, 39, plants pansies to memorialize the location of anti-gay abuse, usually without permission from whatever city he’s in, and then photographs the flower and places it on The Pansy Project website.
Though the project grew out Harfleet’s own personal experiences, he now plants pansies for others, including those who have been murdered during anti-gay incidents, and aside from Manchester, he’s gardened in locations around the world including Turkey, Berlin, Austria and New York, among others.
“What was originally an autobiographical work has become a project that has been embraced by the gay community, who seemed to see the project as way to deal with a shared experience as many members of the LGBT community have experienced bullying or abuse at some point,” Harfleet explains.
The sentiment in doing this is so eloquent and peaceful and makes a statement that even in our darkest times something beautiful can come from it. Ir appears that this gesture is healing to Harfleet and serves as an inspiration to us all to never give up.