Homeless People Make Art

I’ve always enjoyed the arts.  Still, I don’t go to art events as often as I’d like.  Over the years I’ve been to the Symphony, to fine art galleries, to less than fine art galleries, to craft shows in the park, etc.  One of my first experiences as a homeless blogger was to receive complimentary passes to the Symphony in Nashville.  Beethovens Pasturel was my favorite. I’ve also seen my share of Monets, Van Goghs, Picassos, etc.  San Diego has a premier photography museum in Balboa Park where I’ve seen some of the greats in photography.

People who are not familiar with homelessness are often surprised to see a homeless person with artistic talent.  I guess they assume that with talent comes an easy way out of homelessness.  It doesn’t always work that way.  Sometimes a person’s talent is the beginning of his troubles and so he/she may be reluctant to pursue it .  Everyone’s situation is different.  It’s always best not to judge people negatively.

Well, when a homeless person does show some talent or at least inclination towards making art, he can, if talented enough, gain the attention of the right people, and with it can find a way off the streets with it.  I have dabbled in the art scene before, with photography and a few other mixed media things.  I’ve had a few shows in galleries.  Some of my photography may still be hanging up in people’s homes or offices.

I’ve been thinking of trying it again, to do the art thing.  Photography is way to expensive as an art form, but there are other types of visual art I could try.  The trick would be to actually create works of art without having a place of my own in which to make them.   I’d have to do it on the fly, as I wander the city streets – not only carrying around my personal affects like my tent and sleeping bag, but also all the art supplies I would need – this would be no easy feat.  Of course then trying to sell the work. yikes, I have no idea how I’ll do that.  We’ll see how it goes.


About Kevin Barbieux

I have been diagnosed as being chronically homeless. I write about my experiences and opinions of being homeless


  1. TLC

    When I traveled to Portland, OR I admired the art work painted on doors that surround a homeless community: http://mercymissionaries.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/right2dreamtoo.jpg

    My full-time job is a desk job. I like it, but it leaves little room for creativity. Therefore, I also run a part-time photography business. I started shortly after my mom unexpectedly died b/c I needed a constructive/creative outlet to channel my emotions.

    Hope to see some of your work posted!


  2. Go for it and post some of your work!


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