One Lens: Sharing Our Common Views

What is One Lens?

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One Lens: Sharing Our Common Views is a statewide collaborative visual and storytelling project organized by Pennsylvania’s First Lady Frances Wolf, in partnership with the PA Council on the Arts, PA Historical and Museum Commission, the PA Tourism Office, and the Library of Accessible Media for Pennsylvanians to document Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 pandemic experience.

Throughout the month-long submission period in early 2021, approximately 900 Pennsylvanians from 58 of our 67 counties shared their COVID-19 experiences to be displayed in the exhibit and archived in Pennsylvania’s records.

Across the exhibit’s three themes – our lives, our heroes and our communities – we see life in the commonwealth from Mach 2020 through March 2021: the hard realities and the hope for better days, the triumphs and the heartbreaks, the new beginnings and the loss.

Here are those stories; here is our story.

Our Heroes

Paying homage to the pandemic heroes who cannot simply stay home.

One Lens: Our Heroes

Our Lives

Looking at how we spend our time when no one is watching.

One Lens: Our Lives

Our Communities

Showcasing Pennsylvanians uniting in the face of a global health crisis.

One Lens: Our Communities

One Lens submission eligibility, rules, and waivers can be found here.

Audio Submissions

One Lens: Sharing Our Common Views has partnered with the Library of Accessible Media for Pennsylvanians (LAMP) to include audio submissions. This collaboration increased accessibility to Pennsylvanians who are blind or living with visual, physical, or reading disabilities, and those with limited Internet access.

The Bigger Picture

Hosted by Pennsylvania First Lady Frances Wolf, The Bigger Picture is a series of virtual conversations that take a deeper look into our pandemic life, helping to forge connections, celebrate our resilience, and honor our experiences.

Archiving Our Pandemic Experience | February 4, 2021

Historians, librarians, and archivists discuss the 1918 Influenza Pandemic’s effect on Pennsylvania, the connections we can draw to our COVID-19 experiences, and the important role we each can play in creating the history books of tomorrow.

Watch Pennsylvania in the 1918 Influenza Pandemic by Pennsylvania State Archivist Tyler Stump to learn more.

Healing Through Art | February 11, 2021

Researchers, creatives, and art therapists from across Pennsylvania discuss the role that art can play in building and healing communities, and in achieving mental health and wellness. The Pennsylvania Arts Council offers resources to support members of the arts community as they work to stay safe amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Coping with COVID-19 | February 18, 2021

Mental health experts and advocates discuss how trauma affects people; the ways racial, gender, economic, and other inequalities factor into and compound the issue of trauma; and mental health supports and services that exist. If you or a loved one are struggling or are in need of mental health assistance, you are not alone. Please visit our Mental Health Resource Guide a comprehensive list of resources.

The Resiliency of Small Businesses | February 24, 2021

Small business owners share the innovative ways they have kept their employees and communities safe during COVID-19, while economic development experts highlight resources that exist. Please visit Business Unites Against COVID-19 to certify your restaurant as COVID compliant, find trainings and webinars, get PPE for workers, learn more about the COVID-19 vaccines, keep your employees and customers safe, and download additional resources.

Tourism and the Great Outdoors | March 4, 2021 at 12pm

Tourism professionals and environmental advocates and experts talk about how our outdoor spaces have become more important than ever as we’ve looked for ways to stay active and safely enjoy our communities. Head to VisitPA for more information about the outdoor adventures Pennsylvania has to offer.

Exhibit Launch | March 19, 2021 at 4pm

After collecting Pennsylvanians’ stories spanning the past year, First Lady Frances Wolf will be joined by Governor Wolf and One Lens regional ambassadors to discuss the exhibit and common themes among the photo and audio submissions.

For exhibit updates, highlights, and additional materials follow One Lens on Facebook and Instagram.

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