Blog Post 2 – February 25, 2016 by Kat Clarida
It is such an honour to witness an explosion of artistic expression with these new Art for Social Change artists.
The last few weeks exposed participants to the power of music and in particular drumming and percussion on perceptions, feelings and artistic expression. Check out the drum soundscape we created while immersing each participant in drum visualization.
Music and dance was also incorporated into a poetry creation workshop, where the artists lost themselves in the 5 Rhythms by Gabriella Roth and created poetry from their stream of consciousness writings.
As fulfilling as these art explorations were, consistent participation in our project became challenging. So we took a step back and delved into the possible reasons.
Everyone that had previously attended raved about the artistic experiences and were excited and curious to explore their own artistic abilities and how we would all participate in the larger Art for Social Change collaboration. However what we discovered is the age group of urban Indigenous youth we wanted to attract 18 to 30 year olds, had extremely busy and stressful lives juggling school, part-time jobs, homework, family and all on very limited budgets.
But we are nothing if not adaptable and malleable, so we figured a way to take the program to them and at a time more conducive to participation. We are now running our workshops out of the Mamidosewin Aboriginal Student Centre at Algonquin College, and as the word is spreading in the community, we have welcomed many new participants that otherwise would not have an option to participate.
While the workshops explore a multitude of art modalities, key to this project is the personal inner exploration for each participant and their expanding understanding of how art influences their world and their community.
In the photo above, the participants are exploring what is important to them through the creation of a group visual roadmap. This exercise revealed to them common themes in their want for change in their personal lives and their community. In one instance a powerful artistic release was experienced by one of the participants through their art. This is a case where English is a second language and there may be no words, however the art speaks volumes. A powerful example of art creating personal change.
As our project Your Brain on Art has picked up speed again we are narrowing in on just what our Art for Social Change collaboration will be. Stay tuned, this is getting exciting!!! Check out our Facebook page!
For more than 30 years I have been most fortunate to work as an Artist, Consultant, Trainer and Producer for many cutting edge grass-roots communication for social change projects with diverse cultures from across Canada, primarily in the four Inuit land claim territories. Through the exploration of issues using all art modalities, I provide a safe place for people to explore their inner worlds and then proudly voice their world through art.