Let's hear your Voice! This discussion board is a place to Voice your feelings about the conference and, more importantly, to discuss how you will take that experience and transform it into action. Let's come together to inspire each other and make a difference.



Nathan Shedroff, San Francisco, CA, 15-Jun-02
What Israelis and Palestinians do or not is not the problem with the "Don't Say You Didn't Know" exhibit and to dwell on it misses the point. There can be no doubt that it was one-sided and emotional because it was meant to be. Ms. Bartelt’s statement that...


Sue Vessella, Woodbury University, Burbank, CA, 31-May-02
Sylvia Harris inspired me to examine examples of poor design in public information contexts. While in Washington, I visited the Arlington National Cemetery and discovered an informational brochure in need of design attention. As a graphic design professor,...



Steven Heller, New York, 17-Apr-02
Dana is right. Human RIGHTS should be protected at all costs. No right-minded human being can look to the mideast wihtout being angered and saddened by the violence -- the murder on both sides. ON BOTH SIDES. This conflict started almost a century ago and it IS a JEWISH issue. Zionism was a response to anti-Semitism and, whether I agree with this movement or not, to loose sight of that is pure ignorance. I applaud Dana for her efforts on behalf of peace, and I believe that she has put her actions where her heart is. I agree that the occupation must be ended and a Palestinian state must be established. BUT don't tell me that we must support terrorism by understanding the causes of suicide murder. Don't tell me that the Isrealis are the only ones to blame. Don't tell me that there is black and white in this situation. One does not have to label as political correctness a desire to see this conflict addressed fairly through our visualizations of it. The posters in this exhibition taken en masse address Isreali crimes (and US support of them) -- what about the PLO's complicity? What about Hamas? What about Jihad? What about the hypocritical Arab governments that use the Palestinian issue to justify their hatred of Isreal? Sorry folks these are terrorist groups that have an agenda -- and it ain't only about wiping Isreal off the face of the map. Bring peace activists together from all sides and I'll be there. Attack Isreal alone and I'll be forced to take sides -- and that's how conflicts are perpetuated.



(Re)Becca Rapp, Jefferson LA 70121, 16-Apr-02
Allowing their personal agendas to interfere with an exceptional and unprecedented exhibition addressing the Palestinian/Israeli conflict, Mr. Heller and his supporter turn their backs on the recurring violations of human rights in Palestine. I was a participant of the conference and the exhibition "Don’t Say You Didn’t Know," and find Mr. Heller’s volatile attempt to corrupt the credibility of the exhibition and its curator Ms. Bartelt extremely offensive. While some of the posters explain the cause of the Middle East crisis with potent symbolism and text, the images presented are mild in comparison to the reality the people are enduring. Not one poster is anti-Semitic.

I question why Mr. Heller is maintaining his superfluous/reductive/one-dimensional focus on the "Star of David" when faced with 31 other posters portraying the oppression of Palestinians and America’s complicity. My posters addressed the US support of Israel–amounting to billions of dollars and thousands of dead Palestinians, a biased media, and many forms of incursions on the Palestinian people. Why not focus on the symbol of the US dollar which empowers Israel to levy a lop-sided attack on the Palestinian people. We should be enraged that our tax dollars pay for such atrocities.

The purpose of the conference was to acknowledge the potential of the graphic designer as a catalyst for change. I participated in the exhibition because I firmly believe in its objective-to provoke thought and inform. As a student, it was particularly gratifying to hear the many positive responses at the conference to not only my posters, but also the exhibition as a whole.


Dana Bartelt, New Orleans LA, 16-Apr-02
My final response to Steven Heller's and Judy Kirpich's accusations concerning the "Don't Say You Didn't Know " exhibition are: This is not a Jewish issue. The exhibition dealt with human rights violations. Israel chose to use a powerful religious icon representing...


Steven Heller, New York, 16-Apr-02
Roger Cook's justification for using the Star of David is reasoned, but what this once again proves is the power of charged symbols to ingnite emotion and prompt reaction. I too think it takes courage to present unpopular ideas in a public forum, but I continue...



Scott Gillam, Winnnipeg, MB Canada, 16-Apr-02
I would also like to express support for the posting of this exhibition, although not having attended the exhibit myself, many of the comments here have raised many valid points. Many editorials posted here have noted anti-Semitism and a definite slant towards Palestinian views, and I find Steven Heller's accusations quite alarming. When speaking on terms of art and design one should welcome the excitement of opposing views; and we as an educated populace should not expect every exhibition to whole-heartedly embrace and encompass every view.

What we have learned from our ignorance has been the erosion of the 'politically correct' views that permeated our culture in recent years. The fact of the matter is that those notions of world views do not come close to resembling the grim reality of our culture and the cultures of the Middle East. Designers and artists carry a heavy enough weight of creating communication and visual solutions in these turbulent times, and if these symbols stir up the debate, then I applaud them.


Roger Cook, Washington Crossing, PA 18977, 14-Apr-02

I want to express my support to Dana Bartelt and her courage to post the exhibit "Don't say you didn't know."

I designed the poster of the American flag wrapped around the star of David that was in the exhibit. I used these symbols to express...


Steven Heller, New York City, 12-Apr-02
Ms. Bartelt says this exhibition is responsible activism, and in her lopsided presentation of the Palestinian issue it is indeed responsible to the Palestinian cause. And frankly, I accept this subjective position as being consistent with the history of propaganda...


Dana Bartelt, New Orleans, Louisiana, 11-Apr-02
In response to Steven Heller's reaction to the exhibition "Don't Say You Didn't Know" shown at the Voice AIGA National Conference, I am pleased that he found the exhibition itself of high quality and am also encouraged that he agrees that the exhibition "had...


Judy Kirpich, Grafik, Alexandria, VA, 11-Apr-02
Trying to follow up Steven Heller's eloquent reaction to the display for Palestinian posters is a tough act to follow. I have spent the last few weeks since the conference trying to get a coherent voice for my outrage and hurt, and attempting to understand...


Tom Semmes, Bethesda, MD, 08-Apr-02
It seems to me that the material presented at Voice was so rich and challenging to absorb that it would make sense to have regional conferences where people can meet to discuss how to use this material and find out what designers are doing locally. Has there...


Steven Heller, New York, NY, 02-Apr-02
Responsibility and Propaganda
For the better part of my professional life I've supported the active participation of designers in political affairs. The designer's ability to create mnemonic images in the service of social critique is a right and responsibility...


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