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pa′per dolls′ ac·tion fig·ures  

art  + awareness + access

A Traveling Art Experience

paper dolls & action figures


  • a paper or cardboard doll, usu. two-dimensional.

  • a piece of paper cut or folded into the shape of a human being

  • a doll representing a person or fictional character known for vigorous action, such as superhero.

THE QUESTION: This project was born from the idea that people are shaped by occurring and recurring events within society.  Raising the question, have we become so desensitized to the occurrence of injustice and inequities that we’ve become complacent to the fact that society is shaped by people, while we as people are shaped by our choices- and consequently- the choices of others?  Professional and emerging artists were invited to creatively weigh in on the questions: How do your choices shape society? How do our ideas, beliefs, choices, and actions impact the basic needs, happiness, and well-being for ourselves and for others- ultimately contributing to the design of society?


THE PROJECT: Established in 2014 through TJA Creative Studio, Paper Dolls & Action Figures, PDAF, was a visual and performance art experience. PDAF was comprised of two primary programs, high quality exhibitions and community based dialogues to promote social justice + creative expression.  Each program was intentionally designed to ignite conversation on social and environmental issues through a creative lens, while examining the role art plays as social change action figure.  To date PDAF exhibitions of paintings, videos, photographs, and other creative mediums have been on exhibit at two International Social Change Film Festivals and the Zhou B Art Center in Chicago.


THE GOAL: The project goal was to bridge art + social justice + communities through art, access, awareness, and education.  PDAF set out to ignite and unite individuals + creative empowerment, and create social change through art.  PDAF also set out to engage groups of people in dialogue to think critically about how their choices impact greater society in relationship to conflict, social identities, privilege, oppression, social justice, and peace- for the purpose of helping them to enhance understanding of broad social issues.



Oak Park International  Film Festival

September 2014

TJA, Inc. hosted an art exhibition in conjunction with the 10 year anniversary of this festival. This yearly festival is held at the Oak Park Library in Oak Park, Il on the third Saturday of September.


Chicago International Social Change Film Festival

September 2014

TJA, Inc. hosted an art exhibition that included performances, in support of international social change. This yearly festival is held at the Showplace ICON Theater, the largest theater in Chicago, and attracts people from all over the world!


TJA Creative Studio Grand Opening!

October 2014

During our grand opening, we exhibited this traveling art experience. Artists from around the world participated!


Inner Selfie Workshop: Wine and Paper Dolls

November 2014

TJA, Inc. partnered with Women Empowerment to host a painting workshop to unleash the boundaries that confine us. Participants were led in a painting activity and discussion surrounding relationships, vulnerability, and expectations.


Society Art Gallery

December 2014- February 2015

We partnered with Society Art Gallery as the 5th stop for our Paper Dolls & Action Figures traveling exhibit!



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