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  • “The Portrait-Story Project” refers to both the making of Portrait-Stories and The Portrait-Stories as a vast totality of portfolio.¬† Participants self-include (choose to participate) and thus embody The Portrait-Story Project at the moment of their participation. Participants are encouraged to handwrite their personal stories of self-determination upon originals of themselves. The artist of The Portrait-Story Project draws and paints the portraits in person, directly from observation of the subjects; then, those portraits become Portrait-Stories as the subjects write upon them. To read the project’s mission statement, please scroll below.

Mission Statement of The Portrait-Story Project

As privacy-respecting art-media-social phenomena we occur in a non-bureaucratic, non-technocratic, cross-cultural, multi-generational, face-to-face and volunteer nature, primarily-purposed to co-generate an aesthetic practice of media solidarity to contribute to the self-empowerment of communities and individuals connected to the land they live on. We believe that we make ourselves more secure, solvent, sustainable, honorable and coherent by aiding each other’s self-determination with respect to the planet. Bringing this media catalyzing process anywhere on earth, for those asserting it on a broad scale as their own interest, we have operated in spontaneity or by appointment, with or without access to electricity, markets, non-profits or the like, with individuals with or without computer literacy. In valuing and perpetuating their own protagonism, participants handwrite their unique independently standing testimonies into this anecdotal media infrastructure, the ground truths of hundreds, possibly having global ramifications within dramatic events events. Our language-neutral art and story documentary format embodies our value of a diversity of perspective from our own experiences, self-depicting our personal, cultural, ethnic, linguistic, historical, sex, sexual, gender, geographic, political, spiritual or secular identities, especially within the context of synergy towards self-sufficiency, local economy, ecological soundness and the autonomy and dignity of all.

We hold that the most important story-based necessity lies in the vigilant seizure of our own present trajectories via pro-active inspiring inclusive media unbeholden to agencies external to us. For those of us taking responsibility to organize our own way of life, no futures become inevitable except for those we fail to imagine beyond and no futures become necessary except for those we chose to build and those of overcoming ruinous status quos some of our contemporaries tragically pursue. As the sum of our impacts becomes the stuff of our legacy, we find it paramount to produce truthful narratives for future generations to inherit by our informed actions and archives. Meanwhile, we want The Portrait-Story images proliferated wildly as intellectual commonwealth to cross-pollinate the liberation and movement oriented grassroots.While running this project of word and image entrenched in the projects of our lives, we acknowledge that those who desire a world must create it. When we do not enact our own dreams and stories we become the actors of another’s, fair, friendly, survivable, peaceful, desirable – or not.

As a large body of collected work, each series of Portrait-Story originals should curate for the public with not-for-profit, non-authoritarian, non-electoral, community-service and direct-action based groups, for and of the land and the land’s people. Towards freedom in a world holding many worlds within!

The Portrait-Story Project may go anywhere on earth
where geographically-delineated, liberation-oriented, grassroots self-determination
movements summon its volunteering, then embody its participation.
If considering the possibility of a Portrait-Story Project,
please read its entire Mission Statement before messaging:

The Portrait-Story Project only recommences by explicit request.



To see non-Portrait-Story art by Francesco “Cesco” Lovascio “Vascio” di Santis: