Spark Legal Activism through Art & Education

A project of ICAAD
jaspreet.jpeg Jaspreet Singh
Chappaqua, New York, US
$4,151pledged of $20,000 goal
$4,151goal: $20,000
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ICAAD’s work is focused on resisting injustice and building equity. We work with local communities and advocates to change systems and challenge the root causes of injustice.

A donation to ICAAD means a contribution to building a more equitable future. With your help, we can double our impact on behalf of marginalized communities globally. Donations will be matched 100% until the matching funds are exhausted. Use code EQUITY to make sure your donation is matched.


In 2020, ICAAD launched a new ARTivism initiative, a program to integrate the impacts and innovations of art and law to inspire greater public awareness and social action. This year, ICAAD named its inaugural Artivist, Harbani Kaur Ahuja. Harbani is a public interest attorney committed to serving marginalized communities and advocating for human rights in all spaces. She has been involved in many legal, policy, legislative, and advocacy efforts, focusing on civil rights, immigrant rights, and public health. Harbani is also a writer who enjoys creating art through various mediums, including graphic design and poetry. Harbani’s creative work can be found in Her Name is Kaur: Sikh Women Write about Love, Courage, and Faith. 

As an ICAAD ARTivist, Harbani is developing a project, entitled Dicta, that combines her love for the law and poetry, and seeks to unearth the essence of decisions by courts of law in order to illuminate the broader societal context in which they were written.

Harbani is composing 40 poems along four human rights themes selected by ICAAD  -- Women’s Rights, Rights of Black People, LGBTQI+ Rights, and Climate Change / Indigenous Rights. Her poems breathe fire into what can often be a difficult medium for lay audiences to penetrate.

ICAAD is pairing Harbani’s works with photos and the history around the court decisions, culminating in an interactive virtual exhibition of formative changes to the rule of law and civil and human rights. 

The program will inspire lawyers to partner with ICAAD to create a more equitable future, as well as to educate and inspire the general public in the U.S. to better understand the timelessness of civil rights issues, and the importance of engaging in legal activism.

Your support of this project will help fund the promotion of the newly launched interactive virtual exhibition showcasing Dicta for educational audiences. Thank you for making a gift today to fuel ICAAD ARTivism!

Check out these wonderful samples of Dicta and the virtual exhibition.


Interactive timeline from virtual exhibit


  • 12/10/2021

    ICAAD Launches Digital Legal Poetry Exhibit

    NEW YORK - On December 10th, Human Rights Day, the international human rights center ICAAD launches an immersive virtual exhibit featuring the Dicta legal poetry series by Harbani Kaur Ahuja. The exhibit melds poetry, law, and art to inspire activism in pursuit of social justice. 

    Dicta is part of ICAAD's embrace of Artivism as a means of driving social justice at local, regional, and global levels. Artivism, a marriage of artistic expression with activism, often taps into a depth of emotion deeper than words can express and connects across physical and cultural boundaries. The exhibit has garnered sponsorships from international law firm Clifford Chance; Manatt, Phelps & Phillips; and Graymatters; and the virtual exhibit has been developed in partnership with digital creative agency, y’all.

    Partner at y’all, David Lubofsky said, “At y’all, we recognize that art is a force that drives discourse, dialogue, and change for the better. We had the honor and the privilege to lend our design and development talents in partnership with ICAAD to bring Harbani Ahuja’s poetic works to life.”

    "In our human rights work around the world, we have seen how art can inspire positive action," said Jaspreet Singh, co-founder of ICAAD. "We hope that Dicta and our future Artivism projects will inspire others to join efforts to tackle discriminatory issues and promote equality."

    At the heart of Dicta is public interest lawyer and poet Harbani Kaur, ICAAD's inaugural Artist in Residence. As a writer, designer, and advocate, Harbani has focused her law practice on civil rights, immigrant rights, and public health. 

    With Dicta, Harbani creates found poetry in court decisions, illuminating the broader social justice themes from the black letter text. Harbani has completed 20 poems in the 40-poem series. The two themes covered so far are the Rights of Black People and Women’s Rights. The Rights of Black People series was published in the ABA Journal earlier this year. Next year, the remaining poems will be added to the exhibit on the themes of the Right to Love, Immigration, and Indigenous Rights. 

    Dicta Roe v Wade

    "We as a people often view the law as a larger-than-us concept that we don't understand or find accessible, yet is widely considered the equivalent of justice," said Harbani Kaur, ICAAD's Artist in Residence. "My intention for Dicta is to expose the gap between the law and justice."

    Sixteen poems are currently on display in Clifford Chance’s New York office as part of the firm’s ongoing commitment to supporting human rights efforts, arts, and the community. Clifford Chance also produced an interview with artist Harbani Kaur Ahuja which can be viewed here. 

    "We believe Dicta can educate and inspire people everywhere to better understand the timeless and ceaseless struggle for human rights and the importance of finding ways to stay engaged," said Hansdeep Singh, co-founder of ICAAD.

    Clifford Chance partner and lead on the firm’s relationship with ICAAD Celeste Koeleveld said, “Our sponsorship on Dicta is the latest in a variety of pro bono initiatives in which Clifford Chance has supported ICAAD. We are proud to promote legal activism and heighten awareness of human rights efforts and social justice with this exhibit.”

    View the Dicta exhibit here

    Dicta Exhibit Timeline

  • 09/27/2021

    ARTivism Program Highlights

    Dear friend,

    We have many exciting updates to share around the Artivism program and ICAAD's release of Dicta, Artivist-in-Residence Harbani Kaur Ahuja's new exhibition. 

    The first 10 poems of Dicta received an excellent reception through their release via the ABA Journal over the past three months. The ABA Journal is one of the most widely read legal publications in the U.S. and in addition to the release of the gallery, an article was published on Harbani and her work. 

    Harbani was also featured on the Legal Talk Today Podcast. Listen to Harbani’s interview with Laurence Colletti; she reads LA v. Lyons and shares what the piece means to her and her process in creating Dicta. Click here to listen

    Harbani was also interviewed for Law360 Pulse. In the article, you can read about how poetry influences her work as an attorney and get a preview of one of the poems from the next Women's Rights series: Walmart v. Dukes. Check it out here.  

    We also have four blogs inspired by Dicta that were published over the past three months. One, written by two Masters students at Columbia University focuses on Racial Equity in NYC Public Schools.

    The second and third articles are a two-part series entitled "Police Cannot Police Themselves." And the fourth is a case study on the Supreme Court's impact in relation to a case on racial justice in employment law. You can read those four blogs on ICAAD's Ideas blog.

    What's on the horizon for Dicta?

    We have partnered with Y’all, a creative design firm, to develop and launch an immersive virtual exhibit for Dicta on International Human Rights Day, December 10th. Mark your calendars and stay tuned for the rollout of the Women’s Rights Dicta series. 

    We've also opened a call for applications to invite the next cohort of Artivists-in-Residence.

    With your support, we’ll be able to bring on more artivists next year and launch even more exhibits that educate people on human rights and inspire them to activism by moving them from the heart.

    Thank you for your continued support!

  • 06/23/2021

    Sneak Preview of Dicta with Harbani Kaur

    In April, we hosted a virtual concert that brought together 5 incredible Sikh artists around the theme of resisting injustice and building equity. One of those incredible artists was Harbani Kaur, our current artist-in-residence who is currently working on a project called Dicta.

    In the video, Harbani shares two poems and discusses her process around creating them.

    She shared:

    “We, as people, often view the law as a larger than us concept that we don’t quite understand or find accessible. We often also view it as the equivalent of justice. My intention with Dicta was to expose the gap between the law and justice.”

    While the virtual exhibit development is still underway, we wanted to share her sneak preview from the event with you. Enjoy!


    Dicta Sneak Preview

  • 03/23/2021

    Bringing Together Art, Technology, and Law

    We’re excited to share that Harbani has now completed 16 poems in the Dicta exhibit, and it is difficult for us to resist releasing her amazing work at this stage. Each and every poem is deeply moving in this crucial moment for legal activism. When completed, the exhibit will allow the viewer to trace societies’ current struggles and successes to the sacrifices of ordinary people who chose to defy systems of injustice, armed only with the belief that the “arc of the moral universe is long but it bends towards justice.” 

    The ARTivism program amplifies the impacts and innovations of art, technology, and law to inspire greater public awareness and social action, and for Dicta, to map the evolution of the rule of law. As a part of that integration, the ICAAD team has been working to build an interactive virtual exhibit and developing the educational context cards that will accompany each poem. This historical context will provide the narrative for legal activism and explain how these momentous cases came to be. The virtual exhibit is currently in a beta testing phase as we continue to refine its features.

    We are planning a sneak peak for DVN Donors in mid-April. Stay tuned!

Name Donation Date
Joginder Singh Khalsa $111.00 December 2021
Gurdip Malik $2,000.00 December 2021
D. S. $10.00 November 2021
Match Fund $100.00 November 2021
Jaspreet Singh $10.00 November 2021
Match Fund $50.00 November 2021
Z. H. $50.00 November 2021
Match Fund $400.00 November 2021
Match Fund $400.00 November 2021
Anonymous $400.00 November 2021
Administrator Dasvandh Network $500.00 June 2021
Match Fund $25.00 April 2021
A. B. $25.00 April 2021
Match Fund $10.00 April 2021
Tina Ahuja $10.00 April 2021
Vikram Singh $50.00 March 2021
Karam Singh $200.00 December 2020
GP Singh $2,000.00 December 2020
Jaskaran Khalsa $250.00 November 2020
Maneetpaul Singh $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $100.00 November 2020
Daljit Singh $10.00 November 2020
Ajit Singh $50.00 November 2020
Manpreet Dhalla $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Zuleka Henderson $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Bakhshish Kalra $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $50.00 November 2020
Inderpreet Singh $50.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Conan Hines $250.00 November 2020
Dan Mach $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $10.00 November 2020
J. D. $10.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
J. D. $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Rajmohan Bansal $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
P. S. $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Natalie Druce $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Nancy Frappier $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Jessica Wang $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Anonymous $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Anonymous $250.00 November 2020
Match Fund $250.00 November 2020
Jasdeep Singh $250.00 November 2020