Tom Block utilizes the visual arts, writing projects and scholarship to explore the interaction between the spiritual life of humanity and our sometimes-sad shared reality. At the very best, he hopes that his art will have an activist influence, causing viewers to question their own personal roles in making the world a better place to live. He has worked in conjunction with Amnesty International, International Peace Research Association, Peace and Justice Studies Association, Irish Centre for Human Rights, UNESCO Center for Peace, Overseas Chinese Democracy Coalition and other activist organizations. He has published numerous academic articles tracing the influence of Sufism on the development of Jewish mysticism during medieval times, as well as exhibiting his art and discussing his ideas at such institutions as Emory University, George Washington University, Ohio State University, Michigan State University, Franklin and Marshall College, Eastern Carolina University, Hood College, University of Calgary, Manhattan College and Antioch College. His work is in collections at the Irish Centre for Human Rights; Contemporary Art Museum of Montecatini, Italy; Portland (OR) Community College; George Washington University; Georgetown University Hospital; HNTB Architecture, and the Summit Art School. Mr. Block has been awarded monetary grants and other support from the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation (NY), Sugarman Foundation (CA), Nelson Talbott Foundation (MD), Puffin Foundation (NJ), New York Foundation for the Arts (NY), Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County (MD) and Amnesty International.
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