ISSA BARTE, digital artist and founder of Fund The Forest
Tell us a little bit about what you do.
I’m a digital artist, and also the founder of Fund The Forest, a non-profit project that aims to make helping easily accessible and information easily digestible to empower our partner communities and their homes.
What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had to face?
In my art, the biggest challenge in being entrusted with people’s stories and emotions is really keeping a level-head. I think people expect me to be able to juggle all these feelings of strangers well because I’m adept at handling my own emotions, but it was a skill I had to learn the hard way in pursuing this type of art. What made it worth it was how these strangers would message me thank you’s about how connecting to others through my art had helped or saved them in one way or the other.
Was there ever a time when you felt marginalized in the workplace/society because you’re female? If yes, tell us about it.
I’ve had the opportunities to travel more often because of my work, and when I do travel alone, these gender disparities are more evident. I’m told to dress a certain way, keep my guard up, never lose focus when in transit— things I don’t hear my male-counterparts receiving.
What accomplishment are you most proud of?
I’m most proud of my work with Fund the Forest. It’s crazy to see what I had just dreamed about come to life with my team.