Pamela spoke with my university psychology majors, demonstrating such passion for the hurting and broken parts of all human beings, as embodied in her ArtPrize work, Broken Wings. Sometimes, when hurts cut deep, mere words don't suffice but colors, shapes, and artistic images provide a way to express those deepest experiences and hurts and move us a bit toward healing. Pamela powerfully uses creative ways of engaging people to focus on love, grace, kindness, and the common threads of the human experience. My college students and I were very inspired by Pamela as she lives out what it means to love, inspire, and transform pain into opportunities for growth and wellness. Pamela's creativity and social justice perspective call each and every one of us to seek and find our part in the individual and collective healing.
Dr. Nicole McDonald
Professor of Psychology
Cornerstone University, Child and Adolescent Services/Psychology Program
I have had the pleasure of watching the talents of Artist Pamela Alderman for the last 10 years. Pamela has been an annual guest on several of my WGVU public media formats, including The Morning Show and Art Unfiltered. Both formats put the spotlight on Pamela, where she eloquently shared her artistic adventures, including her award winning ArtPrize works. Of course, her art is admirable…but the tie in with her personal “causes” also is inspiring—a beautiful pairing leading to her continued outstanding community gift.
WGVU Morning Show
It was a pleasure working with Pamela! The completed Broken Wings No. 2 project was a pure masterpiece! The girls and I learned so much through this project. Pamela truly has a gift!
Juvenile Probation and Girls Court of Michigan
Pamela has a very unique gift for connecting deeply with people through her artwork. There is something in her work that is deeply magnetic and brings out the vulnerability in all of us. It has been our privilege to partner with her in her efforts to help women find healing and companionship. Thanks again.
Randall L Zylstra, LMSW
Wedgewood Christian Services
The Department was thrilled to be able to host the Reflections of Generosity [and Hometown Hero II] exhibit for Suicide Prevention Month 2016. This exhibit brings awareness that art may help increase the ability to cope and help decrease stress through artistic expression and also identifies a social support service available to Service members, their families and DoD Civilians. It also focuses on how the arts may be a way to elevate spirits, inspiration, and healing. We know that having social support and feeling connected to something and inspiration are protective factors, we wish to increase. The exhibit was an overwhelming success, we're hopeful to host this talented group each year.
Director, Outreach and Education
Defense Suicide Prevention Office
Pamela Alderman is a very talented artist, but she is much more than that. She is a woman concerned about a greater artistic endeavor—the protection, welfare, freedom, dignity and worth of all women. Her exhibit “The Scarlet Cord,” masterfully opens the eyes of the public to the sad and destructive world of human trafficking. She exposes the dark side, but is always ready to show the path to redemption and healing.
Manager of Programs
Pamela put together a powerful program at GVSU. Her exhibit was evocative and emotional, and the event she coordinated brought home the reality of sex trafficking with people who have experienced first-hand the terrible frequency of it in West Michigan. Overall, though, the message was one of hope—the hope that those trafficked can heal, the hope that our actions can mitigate this scourge, and the hope that humanity can triumph over evil.
Dr. Jeff Chamberlain
Director, Frederik Meijer Honors College
Grand Valley State University
Pamela Alderman's installation, The Scarlet Cord, helped thousands of visitors to ArtPrize 2014 in Grand Rapids, Michigan experience the anguish of the human trafficking of children. But like all good art, it also did more. Experiencing The Scarlet Cord was not just about the communication of horrific facts; it also was the invitation of communion between co-sufferers. People were invited into a space where they could feel not only the pain of others, but their own hurts and trauma. Now a short documentary about that experience has been made. Combining music, dance, fine art, and interviews with those experiencing the installation, this documentary is a moving testimony to the power of art to touch lives—even to heal. Highly recommended.
Robert K. Johnston
Professor of Theology and Culture, Fuller Theological Seminary
Author of Reel Spirituality (Baker) and God's Wider Presence (Baker)
Pamela's art acknowledges #MeToo anger and responds by offering women a space to experience healing and peace.
Maria Fee, Ph.D.
Candidate and Adjunct Professor of Theology and Culture
Fuller Theological Seminary
The Scarlet Cord is an important film that gives voice and compassion to human trafficking and sexual exploitation. These issues become more complex and more prevalent in our communities with each passing generation as new waves of technology increase access to pornography. This should be mandatory viewing for all citizens concerned about the welfare of children.
Judge Patricia Gardner
Kent County Circuit Court, Family Division
The Scarlet Cord really moves you as it delves into the issue. While most people don't like to think about under-aged girls being sexually exploited, this horrific injustice is happening in our own backyard. I am proud to share The Scarlet Cord with others in the Valley.
President and CEO of StreetLightUSA
Even before I met Pamela in person, I knew I would like her and all that she represents! Pamela is one powerful and insightful woman! I'm thankful that Pamela shared her vision and talents and The Scarlet Cord with our college community.
Cameron Brunet-Koch, Ph.D.
North Central Michigan College
It was a pleasure to have Pamela Alderman do two interest-raising presentations at Calvin College: one for the Calvin Academy for Lifelong Learning (C.A.L.L.) Noontime Series in which she showed highlights from her eight-year ArtPrize journey and a short video filmed in Phoenix during the 2015 Super Bowl at her sex trafficking art installation. At the CALL luncheon she gave an overview of her ArtPrize work and created a finger-painting work of art on the spot. An appreciative audience found that Alderman's artistic vision invites transformation and inspires hope.
Writer and Professor of English Emeritus
Pamela Alderman's installation, “Courage Ablaze: The Women and Children of Congo,” brought to the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities' LookOut! Art Gallery at Michigan State University an exceptional opportunity to learn about and connect with the struggles and strength of the Congolese people. Through both gentle portraits and the tacit violence of children's rape dresses and a charred tree, the wars of half-a-world away are made as immediate as the Congo minerals that power the cell phones in our pockets and that fuel these wars. By raising awareness, starting conversations, and building partnerships, Pamela's artworks aim to foster social change.
Dr. Carolyn Loeb
Associate Professor, Art and Architectural History
Residential College in the Arts and Humanities
Michigan State University
It is rare that one comes across artistic talent that addresses difficult social realities in such a powerful and engaging manner, but this is what Pamela was able to do when she presented her interactive healing art at this Miss Michigan Pageant. She touched the hearts and minds of the audience, as evidence by their engagement and emotional reactions to her pieces. Her message is strong, hopeful, and empowering for everyone. It was a pleasure to work with Pamela and we look forward to doing so in the future!
Lakeshore Human Trafficking Task Force
The Public Museum School's Lyceum program supports the integration of academic learning and student-directed meaningful experiences. Lyceum students had the privilege of walking through the steps of art making with ArtPrize artist Pamela Alderman. The middle school students collected household items to create a mock-up exhibit on world hunger and helped shoot a short video documenting the learning process. Alderman's creative talent and passion inspired students to serve others through interactive healing art. Her Lyceum class was a powerful learning experience for students who participated.
Principal, Grand Rapids Public Museum School
Grand Rapids Public Schools
Pamela Alderman paints Congolese refugee women who have experienced rape, war, and death. Yet surprisingly, her watercolors are beautiful. They inspire us to appreciate the women's strength and dignity. They make us more human. They connect us. They give us hope.
Author, Grandmother Power: A Global Phenomenon
Over the years I've had the privilege of experiencing Pamela's work though ArtPrize. I'm impressed how she captures and conveys personal topics with truthful integrity. Her artistic style connects sometimes difficult subject matter with audiences through raw relational emotion in a voice of hope, triumph, and inspiration.
Executive Corporate Director of Marketing
Amway Hotel Corporation
I have worked with Pamela a lot. The Amway Grand Plaza hosted her work a number of times during my six years coordinating the ArtPrize show there. She was a pleasure to work with, represented our show well, and provided opportunities for visitors to engage with her work in a meaningful way. I highly recommend her!
Senior Marketing Manager
Amway Hotel Corporation
Pamela Alderman has an exceptional ability to engage with her audience. Through her art, passion, and stories of how she came to paint the Courage Ablaze collection—depicting African women and children refugees, Pamela was able to connect with the audience on a very personal level. I would highly recommend her for future speaking engagements.
Kristin W. Barrington
Special Events Coordinator
Grand Rapids Public Museum
Pamela is always a joy to work with. Her art is so interactive and heartfelt. I am always wondering what she will do next to tug on my emotions and start the process of healing.
Director of Events
Grand Rapids Public Museum
I was struck by Pamela's incredible talent and honesty with her work with the Congolese women. A consummate professional artist she is light-years ahead in humanitarian efforts to bring the plight of families in war torn countries to the general public. Pamela exudes contagious vitality, integrity, and professionalism.
Linda Arnold Schuhardt
Community Relations Manager
Barnes & Noble
Thank you very much for the opportunity to be your intern this year! ArtPrize was a great learning experience! Being a part of something so impactful for those who have trouble expressing difficulties was beautiful. The message that your art conveys is redemptive, healing, and encouraging all at once; it speaks to the power that positive art can have on a person. The heart you have for others is reflective in your work, and I am honored to have been a part of it!
Student, Cornerstone University
I have had the opportunity to work with Pamela twice. In 2010, she displayed a copy of her ArtPrize entry portraying a heart disease survivor at Macy's in collaboration with our Go Red For Women partnership. Pamela was kind enough to share her 2011 ArtPrize entry of a cancer survivor. I commend Pamela on using her gift to advance awareness of woman's health issues and generously reaching out to the community to share her work.
Macy's in Grandville, Michigan
While Pamela's work is disturbing, it is beautiful. She touches your heart and soul and tells a story that needs to be told. I teared as I admired Pamela's work Courage Ablaze. We are always honored to have some of her display incorporated into our annual Women's Expo. Her continuous work of passion for the voiceless is a must see.
Kohler Expos, Inc.