Friday, April 2, 2010

Bringing the art out of people and putting people into art!

I had the privilege (and fun) of helping out a wee bit with Peg Gignoux' latest collaboration. This time it is with Newcomers School in Greensboro, North Carolina.
(Click to enlarge and photo)
Peg (at right in the photo above) is working with art teacher Victoria Wreden Sadeq (left) and her students to create a textile work that reflects the students' amazing diversity and what it is to be a newcomer to this country. Fifty-two countries are represented by the students who worked on this piece! Peg worked with the students to dye organza to create a myriad of beautiful, translucent colors. Then the students wrote down words about what the colors of that cloth meant to them. There were some powerful words that reflected the kids' rural (and in some cases, textile) backgrounds in their home countries. The students then translated those words into their native languages, made stencils and cut the words out of their hand-dyed cloth. They incorporated (and sewed and fused) canvas, world maps and their words to make a very colorful collage. But that's not where it stopped. They cut it all up! They mixed it up!!
Because of Spring Break, Peg has been hand-stitching these pieces together herself. But, once the students return from their break, they will help finish the two sections. The work under construction is being made in two sections that, once mounted, will measure 264 " wide by 56 " high.
The Community Cloth project is designed to fit into the Newcomers School library but, before its installation there, it will be included in an exhibition at Green Hill Center for North Carolina Art (who sponsored the project) in Greensboro from April 9- May 1, 2010.
Peg also teaches various workshops (one I posted about previously - so great!) and works with other community groups to develop wonderful pieces of art. Stayed tuned to hear about her workshops in France!