We are so excited to launch our collection of anti-ageist birthday cards! All designs are from local artists, who reflect the diversity of Colorado and who believe in the need to rethink our biases about aging. To create change, we have to start where we live.
We went with multiple designs on purpose to reflect the diversity of ways we experience and celebrate aging. The artists include people from across Colorado, from a range of identities and backgrounds. There are artists from every age bracket, from late teens to 80s. Many have experienced ageism, whether because of their youth or their many decades of life. All the artists, however, share one thing – an understanding that age is something to celebrate.
Changing minds through art
Ageism shows up in our words and actions, but it starts in our minds. So, the shift has to start in our thinking. Art has a way to transform our thinking; it communicates in a way that words cannot. Images impact our emotions and can change how we see things. This collection of cards communicates a positive and realistic view of aging through visuals and through a treasured tradition – sending good wishes to those we care about.
“Art has the ability to provoke all kinds of emotion and to subtly open minds to ways of seeing things that they would not have seen on their own.” – Card artist Larry Jenks
“I think art is one of the most powerful tools in shifting perceptions on challenging issues. Sometimes words aren’t enough, but art can tell the story visually. It can allow you to feel emotions and go through your process.” – Card artist Allie Glover
The artists who are part of this project are creative change-makers. Their work pushes us to re-think our beliefs about aging. Often, we find that we have internalized ageism, holding beliefs that hurt ourselves. Many of these artists have experienced ageism, but they’ve seen through the damaging, false narratives that are prominent in our society.
“I absolutely think that culture has shaped my view on aging through advertising, lack of representation of older folks in positive ways, generational divides being promoted in the media, and just the general obsession with youth. I am actively working to embrace my own aging, and view aging as a beautiful process that we are blessed to experience.” – Card artist Alexis Allison Davina
Our age is worth celebrating
We are tired of birthday cards that mock older people and stereotype them as weak, forgetful and burdensome. Our cards celebrate the positive things that age brings – wisdom, perspective, self-knowledge, deep friendships. These are the things worth celebrating, as is another year with your friends and family.
Our goal is that sending and receiving these cards will be another way we can gain a more realistic view of aging and learn to appreciate that every stage of life brings its own joy and rewards.
“Historically, art has always stepped in where words and conversations sometimes can’t. When we see art – in shops, in our homes, at markets, on social media – embracing challenging issues and making us question our stance on that issue (or just bringing it to the forefront of our minds), change happens!” – Card artist Melissa Mika
“Art is such a strong tool to use for any message you want to put out into the world. It has the power to be recognized and understood by a multitude of people from different backgrounds, times, and cultures. It can express experiences, capture moments, and evoke emotion, making it a timeless medium. Art is creative communication and if you are able to communicate with all types of people – you are already halfway there in shifting perceptions.” – Card artist Daryn Fouther
With our longer and healthier lives, it is past time to recognize the promise of aging. We encourage you to celebrate aging and spread the love through these birthday cards. Check out the cards in the gallery.
How to get your anti-ageist birthday cards
We are excited to partner with Hope Tank, a local gift shop and social enterprise that sells gifts that give back. Buy cards in person at Hope Tank and online at their digital store.
Check out our press release for more details about the campaign.
Want to get more involved in celebrating aging? Read more about our campaigns and sign up to receive our newsletters. You can also follow us on Facebook.
Sara Breindel, Changing the Narrative blogger