Loisaida Inc. presents
The Cultural Memory Project 3:
My Creativity and I
by: Blanka Amezkua
We are all born with an innate desire to express ourselves and art encompasses a wider range of activities than you may have ever imagined. Some say that creating relieves stress that it encourages creative thinking, it boosts self-esteem and provides a sense of accomplishment, it also increases brain connectivity and plasticity, and finally it is said that art increases empathy, tolerance and feelings of love.
My Creativity and I are a series of arts and crafts workshops made to invite our participants to work within a variety of materials and techniques in order to find a particular way of expressing and sharing their deepest yearnings. The workshops will increase awareness of themselves and their untapped creative capacities. They will take that which was created and reconfigure it, sew, embroider, through the use of humble materials such as pipe cleaners, construction paper, styrofoam plates, and felt. They will shape forms that were never imagined in hopes of attaining a better understanding of themselves, their community and the world around them.
These workshops can be imparted in different order. Many more workshops can be added as well.*
*This project and its curriculum and activities have been conceptualized in a way as to allow for modification and input from the particular senior center and community that choses the Loisaida Cultural Memory Project as their Art Therapy or SU-CASA program.
WORK PLAN & SCHEDULE (Subject to Modification)
The Project curriculum will be presented by the artists to the seniors over 15 approximately two hour contact sessions.
Schedule (Sessions 1-6):
1st & 2nd Session: Flowers; deconstruction of silk flowers in the creation of our own. Initial conversations about ourselves through the deconstruction and making of new silk flowers.
3rd & 4th Session: My heart; how is our heart these days? How are we all feeling? Through the use of construction paper and glue participants will create their heart; a paper collage will be created. And conversation will take place dealing with how they relate to their hearts being.
3rd, 4th, 5th & 6th Session: Painting The Flower that I am; Participants will select a metallic flower; they will draw it and then paint it. They will be introduced to the basics of acrylic painting. Discussions about the significance of flowers in our lives and how they alter the way we feel when we are presented by these ideas.
- Coach and exercise basic skills for expression
- Adopt different art mediums as a canal to express memories
- Develop the Character into a Mask
- Bring alive a significant memory through earth arts
- Introspective and comprehension process through arts
- Exercise imagination and creativity
- Basic development of motor skills
- Learning simple and efficient manual techniques
- Healing emotions and feelings
- Reducing pain, anxiety and tension
- Improve mental, emotional and physical states
- Creation and development of artwork that represents a significant memory
- Obtain a variety of drawings, painting and sculptures from the process of creation
- Each participant will acquire a material artistic result from their own memory exercise
Schedule (Sessions 7-13):
7th, 8th & 9th Session: Patterns in my mind; Basic printing techniques will be introduced and prints will be created through the use of basic materials and printing ink.
10th, 11th & 12th Session: Portraits; Participants will learn about portraits and will then be guided in the creation of their own portrait through the use of felt and thread.
13th, 14th & 15th Session:(OPTIONAL) Wire webs; This is a collective piece that will be created by each participant and then united to create a larger piece. Participants will learn about installation art and collaboration in the creation of this piece.
- Impact on seniors center and surrounding community
- Create audiovisual material from the process of the workshops
- Generate an exhibition showcasing the participants artworks
- Record the process of creating artwork basing it off the participants memories
- Create a report of the process and outcomes of the program
- Getting audiovisual material for the participant to keep
- Preservation of our seniors most significant memories
- Involving the participants in a curatorial process
- Experience for the participants to express themselves in an artistic and creative way
- An Art Exhibition made in collaboration between artists and participants
- Documentation of the creative process and final product
The artists and the seniors will curate, install and host an exhibition that will portray the final outcome of the program. This will include the objects, drawings and paintings made during the workshops. It will be a special opportunity for the seniors to share their memories and experiences and impact the surrounding community in a creative and positive way.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Blanka Amezkua: Blanka is an artist, cultural promoter, and educator. She was formally trained as a painter,
studying in Florence, Italy and received a B.A. from California State University Fresno. Her work and projects have been shown in the United States, Mexico, Belgium and Greece at MoMA-P.S.1, Exit Art, The Bronx Museum of the Arts, El Museo del Barrio, Queens Museum of Art, Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts in San Francisco,
Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana (MACLA), Casita Maria and The Taller Boricua, among others.
Recipient of the BRIO award from the Bronx Council on the Arts in 2007, Blanka began an artist-run project in her bedroom called the Bronx Blue Bedroom Project (BBBP) in 2008. She currently oversees AAA3A (Alexander Avenue Apartment 3A), an artist run project space which offers gregarious living room occurrences, face to face exchanges, food, dialogue, workshops, and art in her living room.