Most of the work I create as a visual artist is essentially in response to the people, places and things that I come in contact with. Early on I learned that I could use these interactions as an opportunity to leave a positive mark or impression behind.
After moving back to my hometown of Arnaudville in 2004, I focused much of my energy on identifying local cultural assets which resulted in the eventual development of the NUNU Arts and Cultural Collective. The mission of this organization mirrors the work that I do as a social sculptor.
NUNU works on a broad range of fundamental issues including environmental, economic, social and cultural sustainability through the development and consequent leveraging of local, regional and international partnerships. With our partners, we collaborate to promote democracy, human rights, and equality using art and culture as a vehicle to teach and develop a new world diplomacy. Our goal is to aid in the empowerment of youth and adults to become advocates, creative thinkers and problem solvers. We teach the power of cooperation through the concept of Creative Placemaking, not just local, but international, in order to create a mosaic celebrating diversity and those things that unify us.
Over the last 12 years, through collaborative work with community members, businesses, governmental organizations and more, my work through the NUNU Collective has created synergy in a once dying town.
A word from writer and social artist Patrice Melnick:
"George Marks has vision, a key element for an artist. However, Marks’ vision reaches beyond the canvas as he strives to unify people in Arnaudville and nearby communities to create an environment that values the arts, the creative spirit and quality of life.
From George Marks, many have learned about the power of collaboration and high aspirations. Following George Marks’ lead, business owners and community organizers have all learned to promote not only ourselves, but all of the businesses and events of the area. One to one, Marks listens, encourages and is quick to assist others with their projects. Many of us now make more effort to aim high for ourselves and the community.
George Marks serves as a catalyst that sparks imagination and action; creativity and partnership. Marks could have used his vision and energy to further profit in his own career but instead he has chosen to remain in his hometown of Arnaudville where he can highlight the beauty of Louisiana culture and integrate art into the landscape. Many of us now have higher aspirations as we strive for our goals together. Life in Central Louisiana will never be the same, and for that we thank George Marks."
Selected Research Publications:
Selected Media Publications: