In 2010 the Imagine Us Here project, with funding from the Bayimba Cultural Foundation, the cooperation of local schools, and the assistance of artists including Ssali Yusuf, Damba Ismail Musoke and John Okot, identified and nurtured the artistic potential of under-privileged but talented young Ugandan schoolchildren, most of whom had never held a paintbrush or seen a box of pastel sticks before joining the project.
These young artists of tomorrow were introduced to contemporary Ugandan art on a series of field trips to art galleries and museums, and to the world of international art through guided online activities. They were instructed and guided by professional Ugandan artists in the use of pencils, pastels, and paints, attended painting and printmaking workshops, and learned about perspective, composition, and the use of colour.
The main genres studied were still life and landscape, with the physical environment (both real and imagined) being the main theme for interpretation. The wonderful work they produced was exhibited online and at the 2010 Bayimba Festival of Arts, where prizes of art materials were awarded for the best paintings as voted for by an international jury. Some of the children's artworks were purchased and are now on display at a gallery in Amsterdam. One of the young artists, a girl aged 15, has even gone on to form her own thriving art club for slum children, with ongoing support from us
In 2011 the main theme will be People
15 of the most committed and promising young artists from the 2010 project, aged 10 to 16, have been chosen to form the core group for 2011
We want these young Imagine Us Here artists to :
1. Consolidate and further develop their skills in the use of 2-dimensional media (pencils, paint etc) and knowledge of colour, form, composition and perspective
2. Learn to observe and represent the human form from life - people at work, at rest, and at play
3. Gain an introductory knowledge of the art of portraiture from life
4. Gain introductory knowledge of how artists from different times and parts of the world have portrayed people
5. Inspire their school friends to explore their own artistic potential and to enjoy and appreciate art
To achieve the above objectives we wish to facilitate :
1. Opportunities for the core group to meet, observe, and be inspired by professional Ugandan artists and their work
2. One or more workshops in elementary figure drawing and painting, led by professional artists
3. One or more workshops in portraiture
4. One or more field trips to interesting and stimulating locations, such as artist's studios and rural villages, for sketching and painting of people at work or engaged in daily activities, for instance professional artists at work or fishermen tending their nets
5. Guided internet sessions exploring African and worldwide art related to the theme
6. An opportunity for the core group members to invite friends and classmates to one or more open art taster sessions, at which the core group will assist in introducing the new ‘recruits' to materials, techniques, and elementary concepts of art
7. An opportunity for all the core group members to display their best work at the Bayimba Festival of Arts in September 2011
In addition to all of the above we may also provide the core group with practical introductory experience of 3-dimensional art and sculpture (budget and resources permitting - this element of the project, if included, will probably involve the production of a single collaborative artwork using recycled materials)
We are seeking artists willing to commit some of their time, experience and ability to this project, to lead practical sessions and workshops, to enhance visits to museums and galleries with their own knowledge and insights and / or to invite the children to visit and be inspired by the artists' own working studios. Artists of all genres are invited, including painters, sculptors, graphic artists and illustrators
We hope that professional and semi-professional artists who take part will themselves become inspired to work on further collaborative projects with schools and education departments in Uganda, either with us or without us, as a result of working with us. We do not seek glory for ourselves, we seek only to further the cause of Art!
We will provide all art materials used by the project participants, transport for participants and artists to field trip locations, ensure suitable venues for all activities, coordinate the project and make all necessary arrangements for the safety and wellbeing of the children whilst they take part. We are unlikely to be able to offer fees to artists but will do our best to ensure that no-one is out of pocket. We will pay travel expenses and also provide refreshments and light snacks where appropriate.
We have a deadline for submitting our project proposal to Bayimba !
We need to know by January 25th 2011 how many artists are willing to take part so that we can decide on the number and variety of sessions and activities.
The project will take place over 16 - 18 weeks between April and September 2011. If you would like to help please email Ceris at firstname.lastname@example.org, include a CV if possible and details of any previous experience of working with children. Please tell us approximately how many hours / days of your time you would like to offer us, what your particular area of expertise or artistic talents are, and anything else you think we should know at this stage (for instance there may be dates on which you know you will definitely not be available). We will update you and consult with you regularly over the coming weeks as the project schedule is finalised.
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