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Cleo Wade

[Photo: GL Wood]

Most Creative People 2017

Cleo Wade

Poet, Artist, Activist

For finding the message

 “I think there’s a hunger for the connectivity that poetry brings,” says Cleo Wade. Over the past two years, the onetime office manager and model has amassed 231,000 Instagram followers, who are drawn to the uplifting, handwritten verse she posts, which often carries messages about chasing dreams and standing up for beliefs. Wade sells her poems as singular prints, and will collect them in a forthcoming book (due in 2018), but she also puts her words to work for other brands. As a member of the creative council for Emily’s List, an organization that helps pro-choice Democratic women run for office, Wade appears at political events and in videos, exciting voters and bolstering candidates. In 2016, she partnered with Armani to host a digital gathering where women could share success stories and encouragement, and her poems inspired a capsule collection from fashion brand Zero + Maria Cornejo in December. By cultivating a community around her poetry, Wade is introducing a lost art form to a new generation—and using it to spur them into action.“Back in the day, you’d just have your show and hopefully get signed to a gallery,” she says of being an artist. “Now you do a partnership with Armani where you align your messaging for both of your audiences. You attract the people in the world who feel or believe the same things with you at the same time, and want to create a space to further that messaging.”

Cleo Wade On The Web
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