“Amy Kerr’s I Am More exhibit is both beautiful and compelling, offering an intimate look at persons in recovery who are managing their behavioral health conditions. Lahey Health Behavioral Services was privileged to have this exhibition at our Danvers Treatment Center, where it brought hope and inspiration to patients, staff and community members alike.”
-Hilary Jacobs, President, Lahey Beth Israel Behavioral Services
“Amy Kerr’s I Am More project is combining art and personal storytelling in a unique and powerful way, to bring the issues of mental health awareness out of the shadows and into public spaces to engage communities and start conversations. Public awareness and reducing stigma are critically important to overcoming the enormous challenges of opioid addiction epidemic as well as to breaking down the barriers to long term treatment and recovery.”
-John Rosenthal, Founder of PAARI (Police Assisted Addiction Recovery Initiative), Friends of Boston’s Homeless, and Stop Handgun Violence
“From an impact standpoint, and based on the feedback from customers and even mall employees, it was one of the best and most meaningful things we have done in a long time. We received emails and letters from multiple individuals thanking us for hosting the exhibit at the center, as well as the inclusion of important mental health resources… and this was pre-pandemic when mental health was not in the front of everyone’s minds and not as widely discussed.”
-Lauren Dalis, Director of Marketing for the NorthShore Mall
“Having these touching portraits hung in our food pantries and meal programs provided access to this meaningful exhibit to almost 8,000 vulnerable clients in a community setting.”
–Marcia Hubbard, Business/Human Resources Manager, The Open Door Food Pantry and Community Supper, Gloucester, MA
“Every day I think about how grateful I am that you have shared this show with the public and with TILI. I have had clients come in to therapy teary-eyed because they are so moved by your work and the stories that are shared. They feel validated and witnessed and it is so helpful to everyone involved….clients and clinicians alike.”
-Elissa Riggio Tosi, owner of TILI, Therapy for Intentional Living in Beverly and Salem
“I cannot put into words the impact that the exhibit had, not only on the student body, which I expected, but also the staff. I have received over 20 emails alone from staff members who were deeply moved by artwork and back story that goes with each work of art. One staff member wrote to me, ‘The work is a reminder of the challenges that so many people face on a daily basis. It is truly humbling.’ I expected the students to be able to connect on a deeper level with the stories behind the work, but to hear the staff members react in the way that that did, was a reminder that art truly connects with ALL audiences. Even the ones we are not always targeting.
To listen to the individual conversations that students had in the hallway as they viewed the work was not only moving, but hopeful. They offered empathy for the characters that were staring back at them in each work of art, solace for each other as they read the stories together and appreciation for the recognition that they were not alone.
Having this exhibition in our school was the catalyst for realizing that there was more support needed for students in the school community who struggle daily with emotional needs. It is because of the I AM MORE exhibit that a new group of students will be taking on a leadership role in supporting students with these needs and raising awareness through the visual arts.”
-Lorrinda Cerrutti, Gloucester High School teacher
“Wonderful event. I Am More translated seamlessly into Fish Tales. BRAVO. It was one of the best we have presented. So Congratulations, very poignant storytelling.”
-Henry Ferrini, Co-Founder of the Gloucester Writers Center
“I can’t even put into words how moving it is to read these entries. Thank you to everyone for sharing their stories. I swear, it makes me go about my day with much more empathy for total strangers. You never know what someone is going through.”
-comment from I Am More opening exhibit
“After now having a week to reflect, I can honestly say that I have never before been so moved by an art exhibit. What an important and meaningful show. It displays such honesty and vulnerability. It is so special to me for it has raised my consciousness and deepened my compassion; it will remain with me always.”
-comment from I Am More opening exhibit
I watched as you put up your art display at the Sawyer library the other day, and noted on your talent as an artist. You replied saying to wait until I read the stories. When I returned the next day to return the book I read overnight, I was shaken by the captions, touched, relieved that there are others like me. Tragically, as a society we do not talk about anxiety, depression, or other painful ailments. Fortunately, there are people like you, who open the eyes to the reality.
What you created is poetry.
-comment from Sawyer Free Library exhibit