2013 Community Grant Recipient - Contemporary Art Day Camp
Purpose of the Project:
The purpose of the Contemporary Art camp is to provide children with an activity during their summer break in Gyumri, while increasing knowledge of Contemporary Art through hands-on activities. The camp’s theme is Peace Thinking and while the children are learning about and creating art, the underlying themes of the camp will be social inclusion, tolerance, and global awareness. There are 3 long term purposes for the Contemporary Art camp. The first is to increase the Gyumri community’s knowledge and understanding of Contemporary Art. The second is to promote the Gyumri Biennale in 2014 and further in the future. Lastly, the camp will be turned into a camp curriculum that can be implemented annually in Gyumri and can be used by others throughout Armenia.
Genesis of the Project:
The underlying issues that are addressed by the Contemporary Art camp are as follows:
1. Low attendance at the 2012 Gyumri Biennale event in Gyumri
Low attendance was due to a lack of promotion of the event and a lack of understanding of Contemporary Art. This was determined by having a meeting with the 2012 Gyumri Biennale event organizers and discussing the event with community members. The art camp will address these two issues by introducing children to Contemporary Art and by increasing the promotion of the event through an annual Contemporary Art camp and an art exhibition at the end of the camp.
2. A lack of knowledge about Contemporary Art in Gyumri and surrounding regions
As stated above, a lack of knowledge of Contemporary Art was discovered through conversations with community members in Gyumri and with the Art Academy Director. To address this issue, the day camp will focus on Contemporary Art with the theme of Peace Thinking.
3. There are few activities for children to participate in once school is finished for the year
This underlying issue was determined by speaking with teachers in Gyumri, children from the orphanages, whom Nor Luyce Mentoring Center works with, and other NGOs. The camp will provide children with activities for seven days, as well as skills and a small amount of materials (such as pencils and a notebook of paper) to continue to practice creating art through the summer.
4. There are very few, if any conversations on Peace Thinking, which includes social inclusion, tolerance, and conflict resolution occurring in schools.
This was determined by discussing the issue with teachers and NGO workers who are working in the schools and know the school curriculum. This was also discussed with the Women for Development NGO, where they are working to bring conflict resolution information and techniques into the classroom. The curriculum that Women for Development NGO has created will help determine ideas and methods of including these concepts into the camp.
Goals and Objectives
Goal 1: To create a welcoming and interesting camp where children can explore Contemporary Art and their own creativity and critical thinking skills.
Objective 1: Create workshops that give children the opportunity to learn about Contemporary Art in a hands-on environment.
Objective 2: Provide a space where children are able to discuss sensitive topics such as social inclusion, diversity, tolerance, as well as express themselves through their art, in relation to these topics.
Goal 2: To teach children about Peace Thinking. The theme Peace Thinking includes: social inclusion, diversity, tolerance, and global awareness.
Objective 1: To teach Peace Thinking by having the campers participate in activities and create art that reflects these concepts.
Objective 2: Expose children to artists from all over the world and show art that reflects peace and peaceful images through PowerPoint presentations, videos, and examples of art work.
Goal 3: Create a Contemporary Art camp curriculum that can be implemented in other parts of Armenia.
Objective 1: Produce relevant workshops that can be used together in a seven day camp or separately for shorter workshops or lessons.
Objective 2: Evaluate our curriculum at the end of the pilot camp in Gyumri and determine what changes or improvements need to be included.
Objective 3: Promote our art camp curriculum among our networks in Armenia and distribute the camp to other interested individuals, teachers, Peace Corps volunteers, or NGOs.
Goal 4: To increase awareness of Contemporary Art and the Gyumri Biennale in Gyumri.
Objective 1: Host a day camp for seven days that focuses on Contemporary Art for 30 children, in two age groups 7-11 and 12-16, in Gyumri.
Objective 2: Organize a children’s Contemporary Art exhibition on the last day of the camp in Gyumri.
Objective 3: Promote the camp, Contemporary Art, and the Gyumri Biennale through social media (such as a Facebook group), email, and word of mouth.