Created by Iakowi:he'ne' Oakes, Snipe Clan, Mohawk Nation, AICH Executive Director, 2020
By the middle of March, an unfamiliar acronym—PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)—had entered into the popular vernacular. Seemingly overnight, selling and wearing masks became ubiquitous in New York. On April 17, 2020, Governor Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order requiring mask-wearing in public wherever social distancing was impossible. For many, wearing a mask outdoors became an opportunity for creativity and personal expression—whether in the form of levity or as a message of protest.