We hope we can encourage students in the Arts and give them the necessary boost to believe they can succeed in their self-expression.
The foundation is currently funding art education for students in Nepal who have never had art class before. Donations to the Foundation will benefit the ongoing Shana Kala program.
Shauna with her artwork at the 2009 Young At Art show in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
A Lesson in Ceramics
Native Arts in Ecuador
In the southern jungles of Ecuador, the Quichua people of the forest have lived for centuries, making use of what rich commodities nature has provided them. Until recent years, their way of life has been without any of the modern inventions and technology we utilize in the western world. Suddenly faced with an onslaught of new technology, different customs, and very different cultural perspectives, the Quichua have both gained and lost in these changing times.
One of the ways in which globalization has affected this indigenous group is through the loss of certain traditions, like the all-natural native ceramics that have existed in their culture for practical use and for beauty.
At Kuyu Urcu, a small bilingual school seated between the two growing cities of Tena and Misahualli, the students have been exposed to things their ancestors never would have imagined. Everything from textbooks to light bulbs to computers, these students are growing up in a different world and at a faster pace. But in the chaos of development, they are beginning to lose the legends, art, and mysticism of their people. But they haven't lost it yet.
Within the small communities and villages spattered in and around Tena are a few individuals who still remember and teach the traditional pottery, which is a process of harvesting the natural materials as well as the knowledge of how to craft the finished project. One such woman is Amada, a Quichua woman with long black hair and talent for remembering and recounting the old stories that have been passed down through generations in her family. After years of practice, Amada has become a skilled and esteemed potter, crafting beautiful hand painted bowls as well as vessels in the shape of the spirits and animals of the Quichua legends.
When we met Amada, she was delighted and proud to come to Kuyu Urcu and share her knowledge with a group of students over a three day period. Amada has provided lessons before for Quichuas and foreignors before, and was happy to cut her fees in half and stay many extra hours helping the children learn her craft.
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