Love Is Not Provoked: Remembering Rudy / by Derric Clemmons

About a week ago, we received the news of yet another senseless murder in the Pilsen community. We soon found out that Rudy Avina, a well known member of the Pilsen community, was the victim. This news broke the hearts of many who knew Rudy. The Facebook page "Remembering Rudy" was created in his memory. There, the sentiment among those who wrote about him, was the same. The community lost a great soul; a being who "loved so genuinely, loved so intensely and found a  million ways to share his love with all of us."  As a community, friends and family dealt with the confusion, despair and sadness of loosing Rudy, hope, love and togetherness quickly became the way to remember him. 

As active members of the community, Cocomocha reached out to Simone's Bar, the place where tragedy occurred. We wanted to support the community and help with the healing process. The staff at Simone's was deeply affected by this. They also knew Rudy, it was said that this was one of his favorite places in his beloved neighborhood. In our attempt to show solidarity with Rudy's friends and family and all the community members who work so hard at maintaining a strong, peaceful neighborhood, we created a #Drivebyart specially for Rudy;

Our theme: "For all the ugly in the world, there still some beautiful: Remembering Rudy"

This quote comes from Mia Avina, Rudy's daughter, who shared this on the Facebook Page (Remembering Rudy) dedicated to her father.

Simone's Bar will kindly lend their facade so that together with a few other Chicago artists, we can create patterns and words that represent and honor Rudy. 

We hope to be able to remind our community and anyone who drives by that love isn't provoked, and that even in the darkest of times, love still prevails.  It gives us strength to put one foot forward when all circumstances would have us burried in darkness of our sorrow. Love really is everything that moves us and if we open up our hearts, to remember anyone we've lost, with and through love, we can truly rise above the pain and our loved ones will never be lost or forgotten. 

Our #drivebyart initiative, meant to create awareness and togetherness, may not change our communities. But if one person is touched, moved, motivated, and inspired by a single word, a color, a pattern, then our art will never end. We will paint the town in hopes to bring us closer to that love which isn't provoked; that love which connects us beyond our flesh, and we will do so one color at a time.