ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
Painter Kathleen Speranza is seen with the anti-Trump painting that she will carry in the Women’s March on Washington.
By BRIDGET TURCOTTE
LYNN — Kathleen Speranza, a local artist who works out of the Lydia Pinkham Building on Western Avenue, created a painting to carry while she protests in Saturday’s Women’s March on Washington.
Speranza said the election left her feeling in shock, horror and disgust.
“I felt so assaulted by the fact that someone like this could be elected,” Speranza said. “I’m 54. We have fought this battle already. We’ve been here, we’ve done this.”
She set out to create an image that would represent her feelings. Initially she planned to use thorns as imagery for chains around the roses but had a change of heart about the message she wanted to send.
“I said ‘no, no. I am not afraid. We’re just going to stand up and show our diversity,” Speranza said.
She painted a pillar of roses, blending different colors to represent the many skin tones of the human race. At the top, it reads “America the beautiful — this is what makes us great.”
The painting was enlarged and printed on a 5-foot poster. Because of its size, it can’t be mounted to a thick poster board until after she arrives.
Speranza is just one of many locals gearing up to protest Friday’s inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. More than 1.3 million people will walk in the Women’s March and its 616 sister marches across the country Saturday at 10 a.m. Eight of the events will be in Massachusetts, including one in Boston.
The Women’s March is intended to be an outlet for activists to stand together in solidarity for the protection of rights, safety and health, and to recognize that diverse communities are the strength of the country. The intention is to send a message to all levels of government, including but not limited to the incoming presidential administration, that the participants stand together and they expect elected leaders to act to protect the rights of women, their families and their communities.
According to the organization’s website “the rhetoric of the past election cycle has insulted, demonized and threatened many of us — immigrants of all statuses, Muslims and those of diverse religious faiths, people who identify as LGBTQIA, native people, black and brown people, people with disabilities, survivors of sexual assault — and our communities are hurting and scared.”